Breath Testing Device AmBeR Could End Blood Test Agony

Posted: Mar 4 2016, 11:01am CST | by , Updated: Mar 6 2016, 8:27pm CST, in News | Latest Science News


Breath Testing Device AmBeR Could End Blood Test Agony
  • Breath testing device ‘AmBeR’ could end the need for Ammonia blood testing!

A UWE academic Prof. Tony Killard came up with the device which detects ammonia levels in breath.

The ordeal of taking blood tests can be completely eliminated thanks to a new device. The new breath testing device has been devised to spare patients the ordeal of blood taking.

A University of the West of England (UWE Bristol) academic came up with the breath testing device. Professor Tony Killard of UWE, created the device which has been named as ‘AmBeR’. Professor Killard is the head of biomedical sciences at UWE Bristol. 

Killard basically created a mass of sensors in the device. The sensor can detect ammonia levels in breath through the device. The breath test could be a breakthrough as it could eliminate needle use for patients.

It has been designed to help patients with a number of chronic diseases. Especially patients with conditions where they regularly need to check ammonia levels through blood testing.

The tech in AmBeR will also allow patients to test their ammonia levels painlessly. Furthermore the ammonia test will be performed with greater accuracy and on a more frequent basis. By the time a self-testing version of the device is developed, people could themselves at home. 

According to Killard, blood testing for Ammonia is an inaccurate and ineffective procedure. Killard explained how there are problems related to doing the test with some conditions.

Especially in children with learning difficulties the blood testing is a major challenge. Killard believes AmBeR will provide clinicians a tool they did not have before.

AmBeR also changes the place and the frequency of testing for Ammonia. Killard stated anyone can do an Ammonia test every day and at home if necessary. 

Killard also explained previously it was not possible to do Ammonia breath test without large equipment. Instruments to test Ammonia from breath do exits but apart from their big size they are not economically viable.

AmBeR will provide easier access as it will be like glucose testing strips. The AmBeR sensor strips could be used once and then thrown away after test is done, like glucose strips. The AmBeR strips if mass produced may be the game-changer of Ammonia testing on a commercial level. 

Killard has formed a company called BreathDX to market his innovation. BreathDX has already secured funding to explore the application of AmBeR in specific conditions.

Currently AmBeR is smaller than a shoe box and is in production level. AmBeR will enter clinical studies in May 2016 before being sold in the market. 

Killard also shared how he was humbled when he first realized the impact AmBeR could have in Ammonia testing. Killard recounts how he attended conferences where he saw people who need daily Ammonia tests.

Killard admitted other than the scientific objective the human focus made him think differently. AmBeR would be of immense value to some people, confirmed by the feedback Killard has received. 

Killard came up with AmBeR while testing new sensor materials. The materials are based on the innovative nanomaterial technology. Eventually Killard developed a new ammonia sensing material using polyaniline.

Polyaniline is an electricity conducting material, which when formed into nanoparticles becomes extremely sensitive. The material was then deposited in very thin layers.

The layers were only thousandths of a millimetre thick and coated using low-cost printing technology. The sensitive sensors could then detect Ammonia in breath. The next step for the new technology would be to measure other trace breath gases. 

You May Like


The Author

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/20" rel="author">Sumayah Aamir</a>
Sumayah Aamir (Google+) has deep experience in analyzing the latest trends.




Leave a Comment

Share this Story

Follow Us
Follow I4U News on Twitter
Follow I4U News on Facebook

You Also Like


Read the Latest from I4U News