Ann Conkle
Dec 23, 2011

Detecting lung cancer in exhaled breath

Researchers at Tecnalia have developed a technique to detect lung cancer by testing a patient’s breath. Human breath is comprised of hundreds of organic compounds, many of which are affected by disease. The scientists identified a range of biomarkers which are generally found at 1-20 parts per billion in healthy human breath but can be increased 10 to 100 times in the breath of sick patients. In addition to identifying the biomarkers, researchers are also working to create more sensitive devices to detect them. This could provide a breakthrough in diagnosing lung cancer, stomach cancer, liver disease, and other severe disorders that have symptoms similar to more routine illnesses.