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Breath Analysis Reliably Indicates Presence, Level of Infection in Mice

Noninvasive method could enable rapid diagnosis in humans without need for blood tests. Breath analysis may prove to be an accurate, noninvasive way to quickly determine the severity of bacterial and other infections, according to a UC Irvine study appearing online today in the open-access journal PLOS ONE.

Employing a chemical analysis method developed for air pollution testing, UC Irvine microbiologists and chemists were able to correlate inflammation levels in laboratory mice to the amount of naturally produced carbon monoxide and other gases in breath samples.

The findings point to human applications of this technology in emergency rooms and intensive care units, potentially augmenting or replacing blood tests.

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