US researchers have stumbled upon a method to use lasers to analyze our breath, helping detect diseases such as asthma and cancer. This technique has been christened ‘cavity-enhanced direct optical frequency comb spectroscopy’ – what a mouthful. It seems that the breath molecules which we breathe out can actually show whether we’re ill or not – for example, excess methylamine can be used to detect liver and kidney disease, while ammonia on the breath could be a possible signal for renal failure and elevated acetone levels in the breath point toward diabetes. Well, I’m all for such tests since I’d hate being probed and poked all over the body just to diagnose a particular disease.
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