Ultrafast gas chromatography coupled to electronic nose to identify volatile biomarkers in exhaled breath from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease patients: A pilot study Article uri icon


  • An analytical method to identify volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the exhaled breath from patients with a diagnosis of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) using a ultrafast gas chromatography system equipped with an electronic nose detector (FGC eNose) has been developed. A prospective study was performed in 23 COPD patients and 33 healthy volunteers; exhalation breathing tests were performed with Tedlar bags. Each sample was analyzed by FCG eNose and the identification of VOCs was based on the Kovats index. Raw data were reduced by principal component analysis (PCA) and canonical discriminant analysis [canonical analysis of principal coordinates (CAP)]. The FCG eNose technology was able to identify 17 VOCs that distinguish COPD patients from healthy volunteers. At all stages of PCA and CAP the discrimination between groups was obvious. Chemical prints were correctly classified up to 82.2%25, and were matched with 78.9%25 of the VOCs detected in the exhaled breath samples. Receiver operating characteristic curve analysis indicated the sensitivity and specificity to be 96%25 and 91%25, respectively. This pilot study demonstrates that FGC eNose is a useful tool to identify VOCs as biomarkers in exhaled breath from COPD patients. Further studies should be performed to enhance the clinical relevance of this quick and ease methodology for COPD diagnosis. © 2019 John Wiley %26 Sons, Ltd.

publication date

  • 2019-01-01

funding provided via