Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Breath may help diagnose infection

22.03.2005


Researchers from Johns Hopkins University are developing a novel method of testing exhaled breath to detect infection rapidly after potential exposure to a biological warfare agent. They report their findings today at the 2005 ASM Biodefense Research Meeting.



"We want to have a tool that can help in the emergency room or first responders to triage on site so that people who are infected can get treatment first," says Joany Jackman, a researcher on the project. "It’s not so hard to sample breath from many people very quickly as it is to draw blood."

When exposed to disease causing organisms, cells in the body release proteins, called cytokines, to help the immune cells identify and fight the infection. Jackman and her colleagues theorized that cytokines might work their way up through the tissue until eventually they would be exhaled through water vapor in the breath, and could be captured and identified.


"Old medical texts, in the days long before sophisticated diagnostics, would recommend that a doctor check a patient by checking his or her breath, so we knew there must be something to it," says Jackman.

In previous studies, Jackman and her colleagues exposed pigs to different infectious agents and collected breath samples, which they condensed and ran through a mass spectrometer to test for cytokines and other proteins. They were able to detect a strong surge in cytokines in exhaled breath in as little as an hour, long before any visible symptoms appeared.

"However for this technology to be an effective diagnostic, immune markers which appear as a result of exposure to agents should be absent in uninfected populations," says Jackman.

To determine whether the cytokine levels could be differentiated from a healthy population, Jackman and co-investigator Nate Boggs purchased exhaled breath samples from swine housed at a commercial pig farm and analyzed the condensates.

"In all animals, immune markers of infection were at or below the limit of detection, indicating that baseline levels of immune markers in uninfected and apparently healthy populations could be expected to be low or undetectable," says Boggs.

Now that they have shown the concept of exhaled breath diagnostics to be viable, the next step is to move into human testing. Having determined in earlier studies that the early responses of cells to infection vary based on infectious agent, they hope to create cytokine profiles that will help identify specific diseases. They are also working on redesigning the breath collector with an eye towards getting it approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

Jim Sliwa | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.asmusa.org

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Nanoparticle Exposure Can Awaken Dormant Viruses in the Lungs
16.01.2017 | Helmholtz Zentrum München - Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Gesundheit und Umwelt

nachricht Cholera bacteria infect more effectively with a simple twist of shape
13.01.2017 | Princeton University

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

Im Focus: How to inflate a hardened concrete shell with a weight of 80 t

At TU Wien, an alternative for resource intensive formwork for the construction of concrete domes was developed. It is now used in a test dome for the Austrian Federal Railways Infrastructure (ÖBB Infrastruktur).

Concrete shells are efficient structures, but not very resource efficient. The formwork for the construction of concrete domes alone requires a high amount of...

Im Focus: Bacterial Pac Man molecule snaps at sugar

Many pathogens use certain sugar compounds from their host to help conceal themselves against the immune system. Scientists at the University of Bonn have now, in cooperation with researchers at the University of York in the United Kingdom, analyzed the dynamics of a bacterial molecule that is involved in this process. They demonstrate that the protein grabs onto the sugar molecule with a Pac Man-like chewing motion and holds it until it can be used. Their results could help design therapeutics that could make the protein poorer at grabbing and holding and hence compromise the pathogen in the host. The study has now been published in “Biophysical Journal”.

The cells of the mouth, nose and intestinal mucosa produce large quantities of a chemical called sialic acid. Many bacteria possess a special transport system...

Im Focus: Newly proposed reference datasets improve weather satellite data quality

UMD, NOAA collaboration demonstrates suitability of in-orbit datasets for weather satellite calibration

"Traffic and weather, together on the hour!" blasts your local radio station, while your smartphone knows the weather halfway across the world. A network of...

Im Focus: Repairing defects in fiber-reinforced plastics more efficiently

Fiber-reinforced plastics (FRP) are frequently used in the aeronautic and automobile industry. However, the repair of workpieces made of these composite materials is often less profitable than exchanging the part. In order to increase the lifetime of FRP parts and to make them more eco-efficient, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) and the Apodius GmbH want to combine a new measuring device for fiber layer orientation with an innovative laser-based repair process.

Defects in FRP pieces may be production or operation-related. Whether or not repair is cost-effective depends on the geometry of the defective area, the tools...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

Nothing will happen without batteries making it happen!

05.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Multiregional brain on a chip

16.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

New technology enables 5-D imaging in live animals, humans

16.01.2017 | Information Technology

Researchers develop environmentally friendly soy air filter

16.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>