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Bio-Sensors Diagnostics Respiratory

Electronic nose detects pneumonia

9 years, 1 month ago

941  0
Posted on Oct 26, 2008, 5 p.m. By Rich Hurd

British scientists have developed an electronic nose capable of identifying potentially-fatal strains of pneumonia by "smelling" a patient's breath.

British scientists have developed an electronic nose capable of identifying potentially-fatal strains of pneumonia by "smelling" a patient's breath.

Professor Hugh Barr and colleagues at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital and Cranfield University are currently testing the device, called the Breathatron, on patients who are on ventilators. Such patients are at high risk of contracting potentially-fatal Ventilator Acquired Pneumonia (VAP). At present it can take laboratories several days to ascertain what strain of pneumonia a patient has. However, the Breathatron can tell doctors what strain they are dealing with instantaneously, simply by analyzing the patient's breath.

The Breathatron uses a metal oxide sensor to detect volatile organic compounds (VOCs) present in the breath and the saliva. The device analyzes the VOCs present to determine which strain of bacteria is responsible for the infection. At present, it is 80-90% accurate. Other versions of the Breathatron, designed to detect tuberculosis and cancer, are currently under development.
 
E-nose can 'sniff' out deadly bug. BBC News Website. October 24th 2008.

 

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