A Smartphone Breath Sensor That Quickly Detects Serious Disease

Scientists in South Korea have developed a highly-responsive sensor that can identify compounds found on a person's breath signaling the presence of diabetes or lung cancer.

What's the Latest Development?


Scientists at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) have come up with a quick and efficient way to diagnose serious disease through the use of a highly-sensitive exhaled breath sensor. Made of tin dioxide nanofibers coated with catalytic platinum nanoparticles, the sensor can detect the presence of acetone (a diabetes signal) or toluene (a lung cancer signal) even at concentrations of less than 100 parts per billion. It can also be mounted on a smartphone, which makes it ideal in situations where portable gas sensors would be too cumbersome and complex to use. The scientists' research is documented in a paper published in the May 20 issue of Advanced Functional Materials.

What's the Big Idea?

Breath analysis is gaining more attention in the medical community because it's faster, less invasive, and more environmentally friendly than other testing methods. The challenge for scientists involves speed and accuracy as well as portability, all of which the KAIST sensor helps satisfy. The team is now working on developing other sensors using a range of different semiconducting metal oxide nanofibers and catalysts.

Photo Credit: Shutterstock.com

Read it at ScienceDaily

LinkedIn meets Tinder in this mindful networking app

Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.

Getty Images
Sponsored
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.

No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.

Keep reading Show less

What’s behind our appetite for self-destruction?

Is it "perverseness," the "death drive," or something else?

Photo by Brad Neathery on Unsplash
Mind & Brain

Each new year, people vow to put an end to self-destructive habits like smoking, overeating or overspending.

Keep reading Show less

A world map of Virgin Mary apparitions

She met mere mortals with and without the Vatican's approval.

Strange Maps
  • For centuries, the Virgin Mary has appeared to the faithful, requesting devotion and promising comfort.
  • These maps show the geography of Marian apparitions – the handful approved by the Vatican, and many others.
  • Historically, Europe is where most apparitions have been reported, but the U.S. is pretty fertile ground too.
Keep reading Show less

Douglas Rushkoff – It’s not the technology’s fault

It's up to us humans to re-humanize our world. An economy that prioritizes growth and profits over humanity has led to digital platforms that "strip the topsoil" of human behavior, whole industries, and the planet, giving less and less back. And only we can save us.

Think Again Podcasts
  • It's an all-hands-on-deck moment in the arc of civilization.
  • Everyone has a choice: Do you want to try to earn enough money to insulate yourself from the world you're creating— or do you want to make the world a place you don't have to insulate yourself from?
Keep reading Show less