Many people in the world die annually from cancer, mainly due to an absence of timely diagnosis . But what would you think if you knew that there is already a way to detect this disease by means of a electronic nose ? Incredible as this may seem, it is close to the possible.
Oncologists of Technological Institute of Israel known as Technion , work hard in the creation of a "electronic nanon "that will make it possible to detect cancer through the breath of patients.
According to a study published in the British Journal of Cancer, showed that the team was able to identify, in preliminary tests, chemical signals of the disease in the breathing of patients with lung cancer or other head and neck cancer.
Around the 80 volunteers participated in the research carried out in Technion; Of these, 22 had several types of head and neck cancer, 24 had lung cancer and 36 were healthy.
Experts trust that this test may in the future be used in the consultation of a family doctor to provide a immediate diagnosis by using this "electronic nanon ".
The researchers of Technion They are especially focused on studying the types of cancer of the head and neck. These types are very difficult to treat successfully, since their diagnosis is usually late. These include those of the salivary glands, lip, mouth, nose, larynx and hypopharynx.
Hossam Haick , principal investigator of TechnionHe said to BBC World that: "There is an urgent need to develop new ways of detecting cancers of the head and neck since the diagnosis of the disease is complicated and requires specialized examinations; we have shown that with a simple breath test you can detect patterns of molecules present in patients with cancers of the head and neck. "He added:" Now we have to test these results in larger studies to see how they could lead to diagnostic methods of the illness".
For Lesley Walker , from the British research organization Cancer Research UK , "These initial results are promising for the development of a breath test that detects cancers that are often diagnosed at an advanced stage, but it is important to be clear that this is a small study, in a very early phase . It takes years of investigation with patients to see if the breath test can be used in a clinic. "
These studies and their results they are quite promising, unfortunately they are still in an experimental stage, so we will have to wait for something to be done to the different countries. The truth is that, if at any time the use of this technology generalizes, the benefits for research and treatment oncological , will have unprecedented progress.