13 January 2017
- Imagine finding out what’s making you feel sick just by breathing. That idea is the goal of a new technology that researchers are saying can detect 17 different diseases just by “smelling” a patient’s breath.
The Na-Nose device has been compared to a breathalyzer, and according to a study published in the journal ACS Nano, it can determine whether someone has certain diseases with 86 percent accuracy. Those medical conditions include as varied as certain cancers, Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis and kidney disease, among others.
The device can distinguish between the diseases because it picks up on something called volatile organic compounds that the diseases cause to be emitted in a person’s breath. According to the researchers, the 17 conditions all resulted in 13 specific compounds being released, but each with their own pattern.
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