An "electronic nose" for early detection of chronic lung graft dysfunction
About half of lung transplant patients develop chronic graft dysfunction or chronic rejection within 5 years of transplantation. This is the most important cause of death and predicting or diagnosing dysfunction early allows patients to be treated earlier.
Currently, it takes several months to diagnose chronic graft dysfunction. He has lung function tests performed regularly and if there is a drop of at least 80%, further investigations are needed to rule out other causes that can be treated, such as infection.
Dutch researchers have tested an 'electronic nose', a device called SpiroNose developed by the company Breathomix. This sensor-equipped system analyses volatile organic compounds in exhaled air and, using a deep learning algorithm, identifies different lung diseases.
Further work is needed to validate the promising results. In addition, it would be interesting if the "electronic nose" could differentiate between obliterative bronchiolitis and restrictive syndrome, as the former is associated with a survival of 3 to 5 years after diagnosis, compared with only 1 to 2 years for the latter, the researcher added in the ERS press release.
On its website, the Dutch company states that its device is associated with a web-based platform to provide real-time analysis results for "future applications in diagnosis and precision medicine in different types of cancer, inflammatory and infectious diseases".