Volatile Biomarkers - 1st Edition - ISBN: 9780444626134, 9780444626202

Volatile Biomarkers

1st Edition

Non-Invasive Diagnosis in Physiology and Medicine

Editors: Anton Amann David Smith
eBook ISBN: 9780444626202
Hardcover ISBN: 9780444626134
Imprint: Elsevier
Published Date: 13th May 2013
Page Count: 600
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Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in exhaled breath, sweat or urine carry much information on the state of human health. The role of VOCs in clinical diagnosis and therapeutic monitoring is expected to become increasingly significant due to recent advances in the field. Volatile Biomarkers: Non-Invasive Diagnosis in Physiology and Medicine includes the latest discoveries and applications for VOCs from the world's foremost scientists and clinicians working in this emerging analytic area.

Key Features

  • Appeals to a multidisciplinary audience, including scientists, researchers, and clinicians with an interest in breath analysis
  • Features the latest scientific research and technical breakthroughs in the diagnostic and therapeutic aspects of volatile organic compounds
  • Includes case presentations documenting applications in multiple areas of human health and safety


Chemists, biochemists, cell biologists, physiologists, and clinicians with an interest in breath analysis

Table of Contents

List of Contributors


PART A Interpretation of Breath Analysis Data

Chapter 1. Mathematical and Statistical Approaches for Interpreting Biomarker Compounds in Exhaled Human Breath

1.1 Introduction

1.2 Data interpretation

1.3 Conclusions and recommendations



Chapter 2. Issues and Challenges in Human Breath Research: Perspectives from Our Experience

2.1 Introduction

2.2 Defining normal in clinical practice: the case of a routine liver blood test

2.3 Developing a breath test: can the blood assay be unseated?

2.4 Convincing clinicians

2.5 Breath markers

2.6 Conclusion


PART B Real-Time Analysis of Exhaled Breath

Chapter 3. Physiological Modeling for Analysis of Exhaled Breath

3.1 Introduction

3.2 Real-time measurements: experimental basics

3.3 Modeling

3.4 Concluding remarks


PART C Physiological and Clinical Studies

Chapter 4. Recent SIFT-MS Studies of Volatile Compounds in Physiology, Medicine and Cell Biology

4.1 Introduction

4.2 Direct breath analysis

4.3 VOC emission from skin; comparison with VOCs in breath

4.4 Exhaled breath condensate and broncoalveolar lavage

4.5 VOCs in urine headspace; ketones and ovulation; 3-HBA

4.6 Volatile biomarkers of cancer cells, in vitro and in vivo

4.7 Alcohol ingestion and detection and cannabis

4.8 Flowing afterglow mass spectrometry, FA-MS, and total body water

4.9 Summary remarks; future prospects for SIFT-MS and FA-MS in medicine


Chapter 5. The Analysis of Oral Air by Selected Ion Flow Tube Mass Spectrometry Using Indole and Methylindole as Examples

5.1 Introduction

5.2 Oral malodor

5.3 Oral air sampling considerations

5.4 Indoles

5.5 Summary and conclusion


Chapter 6. Smokers Breath as Seen by Proton-Transfer-Reaction Time-of-Flight Mass Spectrometry (PTR-TOF-MS)

6.1 Introduction

6.2 Materials and methods

6.3 Results and discussion

6.4 Conclusion


Chapter 7. Exhaled Breath Analysis in Occupational Medicine

7.1 Rationale for the use of exhaled breath analysis in occupational medicine

7.2 Exhaled nitric oxide

7.3 Exhaled breath condensate (EBC)

7.4 Exhaled volatile organic compounds


Chapter 8. Volatile Organic Compounds in Human Breath: Biogenic Origin and Point-of-Care Analysis Approaches

8.1 Biogenic origin of volatile compounds in human exhaled breath

8.2 Miniature mobile point-of-care diagnostic systems for VOC breath biomarkers: trends and future requirements

8.3 Advances in data analysis required for breath sensor technologies


Chapter 9. Breath Analysis in Critically Ill Patients—Potential and Limitations

9.1 Introduction

9.2 Technical aspects of breath analysis in critically ill patients

9.3 Methodological aspects

9.4 Clinical aspects of breath analysis in critically ill patients

9.5 Conclusions


Chapter 10. Analysis of Cancer Biomarkers in Exhaled Breath and Comparison with Sensory Indications by Dogs

10.1 Introduction

10.2 Experimental

10.3 Results and Discussion

10.4 Conclusions


PART D Nitric Oxide, NO, and Carbon Monoxide, CO

Chapter 11. Added Value with Extended NO Analysis

11.1 Background

11.2 A two compartment model

11.3 Different no models

11.4 Corrections for axial back diffusion

11.5 Limitations

11.6 Values from non-smoking healthy subjects

11.7 The usefulness of extended no analysis

11.8 Conclusions


Chapter 12. Carbon Monoxide as an Exhaled Biomarker of Pulmonary Diseases

12.1 Introduction

12.2 Chemical and biochemical properties of CO

12.3 Environmental sources of CO

12.4 Endogenous sources of CO: the heme oxygenase enzyme system

12.5 Signaling properties of CO

12.6 CYTO- and tissue-protective effects of CO

12.7 Methods for breath CO detection

12.8 Exhaled CO in human diseases

12.9 Conclusions


Chapter 13. Exhaled Nitric Oxide in Clinical Practice: Recent Advances and New Challenges

13.1 Introduction

13.2 Exhaled nitric oxide

13.3 Technical aspects of measurement

13.4 NO in clinical decision making

13.5 Conclusions and directions for future areas of research


PART E Clinical Breath Tests

Chapter 14. An Update on 13C-Breath Tests: The Transition to Acceptability into Clinical Practice

14.1 Introduction

14.2 History of 13C breath tests

14.3 Standardization of instrumentation and breath collection bags

14.4 Breath tests during the period 2005–2011

14.5 The future of 13C-breath tests


PART F Development and Use of Sensors

Chapter 15. Sensors for Exhaled Gas Analysis: An Analytical Review

15.1 Introduction. sensors as a prospective tool for implementation of fundamental findings in the area of exhaled gas analysis in the clinical setting

15.2 Sensory metrological performance essential for exhaled breath measurements

15.3 Types of sensors used for exhaled gas analysis

15.4 Detection principles and concepts involved in breath analysis using sensors

15.5 Medical applications of sensory breath analysis

15.6 Concluding remarks


Chapter 16. Arrays of Nanomaterial-Based Sensors for Breath Testing

16.1 Introduction

16.2 The design of the sensor array

16.3 Nanomaterials for sensor arrays

16.4 Chemiresistive MCNP films for sensor arrays

16.5 Single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTS) for sensors arrays

16.6 Semiconducting nanowires for cross-reactive sensors

16.7 Summary and conclusions


Chapter 17. Smart Sensor Systems for Human Health Breath Monitoring Applications

17.1 Introduction

17.2 Smart sensor systems

17.3 Breath monitoring: smart sensor system development

17.4 Home asthma breath monitoring technology

17.5 Asthma monitoring system miniaturization

17.6 Summary and conclusion


Chapter 18. VOC Analysis by SIFT-MS, GC-MS, and Electronic Nose for Diagnosing and Monitoring Disease

18.1 Methodology and VOC analysis

18.2 Healthy volunteers

18.3 Acetone and diabetes

18.4 Acetone from skin

18.5 Tuberculosis and other infectious diseases

18.6 Gastro-intestinal illness

18.7 Bladder cancer

18.8 Concluding remarks


PART G Exhaled Breath Condensate (EBC) and Particulates

Chapter 19. Measurement of Biomarkers of Oxidative Stress and Airway Inflammation in Exhaled Breath Condensate: Methodology and Potential Applications in Patients with COPD and Healthy Smokers

19.1 Introduction

19.2 EBC analysis: methodology

19.3 Analysis of EBC from patients with COPD and healthy smokers

19.4 Advantages and limitations of the EBC technique

19.5 Future research


Chapter 20. Particles in Exhaled Air—A Novel Method of Sampling Non-Volatiles in Exhaled Air

20.1 Introduction

20.2 Number of particles in exhaled breath

20.3 Formation and origin of exhaled particles

20.4 Composition of exhaled particles

20.5 Sampling of exhaled particles in occupational medicine

20.6 Conclusions


PART H Volatiles of Microbial Origin: Urine, Stool and in vitro Cultures

Chapter 21. Challenges in the Investigation of Volatile Disease Biomarkers in Urine

21.1 Introduction

21.2 Distinctive odors and/or volatile profiles associated with diseases are present in urine and detected by animals and analytical instruments

21.3 Challenges in monitoring volatile disease biomarkers in urine

21.4 Discussion


Chapter 22. Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) Found in Urine and Stool

22.1 Introduction

22.2 Urine VOCs and disease

22.3 Bacteria present in human urine, current test methods, and VOC analyses

22.4 Stool VOCs and disease

22.5 A comparison of VOCs found in urine and stool

22.6 Summary


Chapter 23. Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) Released by Pathogenic Microorganisms in vitro: Potential Breath Biomarkers for Early-Stage Diagnosis of Disease

23.1 Introduction

23.2 Methodology

23.3 Results

23.4 Discussion

23.5 Summary


PART I Urban Search and Rescue Operations

Chapter 24. Potential Applications of Volatile Organic Compounds in Safety and Security

24.1 Introduction

24.2 Chemical analysis of breath

24.3 Analytical instrumentation; field technology

24.4 Factors affecting VOCs

24.5 Volatiles in safety and security applications

24.6 Urine as a potential source of markers of human presence

24.7 Evaluation of IMS-based portable technologies for the detection of urine-borne human scent constituents

24.8 SPATIO-temporal measurements of VOCs

24.9 Real-time measurement of exhaled breath and skin emanations

24.10 A hit list of compounds for urban search and rescue operations

24.11 Summary




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© Elsevier 2013
eBook ISBN:
Hardcover ISBN:

About the Editor

Anton Amann

Prof. Dr. Anton Amann is Director of the Breath Research Institute of the Austrian Academy of Sciences and Professor at Innsbruck Medical University. He is a recipient of the prestigious Marie Sklodowska Curie Medal of the Polish Chemical Society. Prof. Amann coordinated the EU-project BAMOD (topic: breath analysis of lung carcinoma patients, eu-proposal.voc-research.at) and is a steering committee member of the EU-project SGL for USaR (topic: searching of entrapped persons, e.g., using volatile compounds released through breath, skin and urine, www.sgl-eu.org). He is Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Breath Research, which is published by the “Institute of Physics” (IOP, Bristol, UK, www.iop.org/EJ/journal/JBR) and Chairman of the International Association for Breath Research (IABR, iabr.voc-research.at).

Affiliations and Expertise

Director of Breath Research Institute of the Austrian Academy of Sciences, Innsbruck, Austria

David Smith

Prof. Dr. David Smith is Professor in the School of Medicine at Keele University (UK). He is a Fellow of the Royal Society (elected 1988) and a Fellow of the Institute of Physics. He was awarded the Schrödinger Prize in 1992. Prof. Smith is the inventor of Selected Ion Flow Tube Mass Spectrometry (SIFT-MS) and Flowing Afterglow Mass Spectrometry (FA-MS), now widely used for trace gas analysis of air and exhaled breath. He is co-author of more than 390 peer-reviewed papers and book chapters, covering the fields of plasma physics, ion chemistry, terrestrial and interstellar chemistry, mass spectrometry, gas analysis, and breath analysis (more than 12600 citations in Web of Science; h-index 61). He is Founder Member of the Editorial Board of the Journal of Breath Research.

Affiliations and Expertise

Professor, School of Medicine, Keele University, Stoke-on-Trent, UK


"The book appropriately starts with a discussion of interpreting breath analyses, and readers quickly learn that the lack of standardization for specimen collection, patient preparation, or laboratory analytical methodology has greatly limited its applicability to assessing human health or disease…This book nicely summarizes the current state of the art of VOC detection and analysis for a variety of interesting applications." --Doody.com, November 2013

"Volatile organic compounds are continuously generated by the human body and partially emitted in exhaled breath and through the skin, as well as other pathways…Medical, biological, chemical, and engineering specialists review developments in breath analysis since 2005, when the previous volume was completed." --Reference & Research Book News, October 2013