Breath Test to Detect Cancer in Trials at Hospitals

By Clyde Hughes – Re-Blogged From Newsmax Health

A breath test that could detect cancer is in trials now in numerous hospitals after a test run in one health center since 2015, The Sun reported.

The ReCIVA Breath Sampler reportedly can analyze a gasp of breath for the slightest trace of cancer-linked chemicals. Cambridge scientists Billy Boyle, who lost his wife to colon cancer at 36 in 2014, created the test, The Sun wrote.

Image: Breath Test to Detect Cancer in Trials at Hospitals

“We know that in cancer, early diagnosis is what will save lives,” Boyle, who owns the company Owlstone Medical, said, according to The Sun. “But a lot of tests today are not very pleasant and that means people just don’t show up for the tests.

“You need to have tests which are acceptable to the patients. So, if you don’t like getting a blood draw, it doesn’t get better than breath,” Boyle continued.

Bloomberg Businessweek said Owlstone last November enlisted GlaxoSmithKline Plc in an effort to identify markers for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, which affects about 329 million people around the world.

Boyle told Businessweek in June that he hopes to have what he calls his “Breath Biopsy” devices in clinics late next year and sell them for less than $100 each.

On its website, Owlstone Medical said it believes the device can save 100,000 lives and save health care providers $1.5 billion annually.

“Early detection has the greatest potential to impact survival rates,” Owlstone said on its website. “If detected early over half of lung cancer patients and 93 percent of colon cancer patients can be cured with treatments that exist today.

“Every time you breathe out there are thousands of chemicals on your breath, some of these are markers of cancer. … We were delighted to get the backing of the NHS and (Cancer Research UK) to develop our technology and run large scale clinical trials,” the website continued.

The device recently won the MacRobert Award, the United Kingdom’s most prestigious prize for engineering.


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