Company factfile

  • Established in 2012
  • Spin-out company from the Faculty of Life Sciences
  • Founded by Dr Curtis Dobson and Dr Gordon Barker
  • Point of care medical devices for monitoring / diagnosing microbial infection
  • IP – Patent protection, design rights
  • Funded by UMIP Proof-of-Principle Funding (PoP), BBSRC award and grant funding, SBRI / D4D funded contract in renal care with Dept of Health, i4i / NIHR grant funding in wound care.



“My inspiration is the desire to make sure our research actually counts and has impact in the real world.”

Dr Curtis Dobson, co-founder

About Microsensor Ltd

Microsensor Ltd is developing novel point-of-care medical devices for detecting microbial infection. These devices act as an early warning system for infection and can even diagnose which antibiotics will be most effective in treating an emerging infection. This proprietary technology is inexpensive and robust, providing a clear ‘yes/no’ signal indicating if a clinically relevant level of infection has been reached, thereby enabling earlier intervention than would otherwise be possible.

Infection is signalled by the appearance of a distinctive colour change in a readout window and the intervention-free sensor, which is ‘built into’ the medical device, triggers in an ‘all or nothing’ fashion above a pre-determined threshold so there is no risk of ambiguity in the signal.

The technology is well suited to numerous high volume markets where there is a need for continuous, point-of-care microbial contamination monitoring, where end-users can clearly and easily understand when action must be taken. The ability to detect infection early, thereby triggering rapid replacement of an infected device/device component and /or prompting cleaning or disinfection would be a great advantage for many healthcare applications and should improve outcomes for patients.

We met up with Dr Curtis Dobs on, cofounder of Microsensor Ltd., to find out more about the company’s journey and his personal experiences of setting up a spin-out…