Take My Breath Assay
Could point-of-care breath tests tighten our grasp on the pandemic?
Matt Hallam | | Quick Read
Rapid distinction of COVID-19 from other respiratory conditions could improve patient care and protect healthcare staff – and a new feasibility study suggests that GC-IMS could be applied to the cause.
Single breath samples were taken from adults presenting to hospitals in Edinburgh, UK, and Dortmund, Germany, with potential COVID-19 and subjected to VOC analysis by GC-IMS. Comparison of the VOC results with RT-qPCR swabs and clinical review demonstrated over 80 percent accuracy for GC testing across sites. Sensitivity was 82.4 percent in Edinburgh and 90 percent in Dortmund; specificity was 75 percent and 80 percent, respectively.
And the tell-tale markers? Aldehydes, ketones, and methanol, according to multivariate analysis. Such approaches could prove a valuable weapon in endemic flu seasons until recent vaccine news becomes a reality.
- DM Ruszkiewicz et al., EClinicalMedicine (2020). DOI: 10.1016/j.eclinm.2020.100609