A rapid breath test using “electronic nose” (eNose) technology developed at the Technion in Haifa has been shown to be effective in verifying the diagnosis of atherosclerosis (a disease affecting the arteries) in patients.
The artificial nose uses sensitive, submicroscopic sensors (nanoparticles) capable of detecting tiny molecular changes in the patient’s blood.
The test can identify disease biomarkers and screen high-risk groups for specific diseases, as well as monitor treatments in people with that disease. This technology has already been used to detect a variety of diseases, including certain types of cancer.
The study used eNose technology, developed by Professor Hossam Haick of the Wolfson School of Chemical Engineering. Its effectiveness has been verified in the diagnosis of obstructive atherosclerosis, cancer and other diseases.
According to the results of the first part of the study, models were built comparing three degrees of severity of the disease of atherosclerosis – its absence, the presence of the non-obstructive type and the presence of the obstructive type. In the second phase of the study, the models were used to examine the ability to discriminate between the three atherosclerotic conditions in 25 additional patients.
The study showed that the breath test was able to correctly distinguish patients with normal arteries from patients with atherosclerosis – with a sensitivity of 69% and a specificity of 67%. “These are encouraging initial data regarding the diagnostic capability and accuracy of the system,” said Dr. Inbar Nardi, who initiated the study.
“This is a preliminary and extraordinary study that motivates and justifies the continued development of eNose technology as a simple, rapid, and non-invasive diagnostic tool for diagnosis in the field of cardiology,” he said. she concluded.