Menssana Research develops 85% accurate breath test for pulmonary tuberculosis

November 09, 2015

Another advantage is that the breath test is safe, painless, and non-invasive, as a patient breathes gently for two minutes for a sample collection.

The breath test may offer a new way to detect tuberculosis, a major cause of death, especially in developing countries. Doctors often have difficulty diagnosing the disease because current tests such as a chest X-ray or sputum culture are expensive and often generate false-positive or false-negative results.

The United States Air Force recently awarded Menssana Research a contract to evaluate a new point-of-care breath test for pulmonary tuberculosis, studying patients in Africa, Great Britain and the Philippines. If successful, a patient could learn within minutes whether they are infected with tuberculosis.

Dr. Phillips hopes that physicians and patients will eventually consider a breath test in the same way as we now think of a chest x-ray or a blood test: as an inexpensive and convenient screening test which can detect several diseases in their earliest and most treatable stages.

Menssana Research is currently developing breath tests for several other diseases, including lung cancer, breast cancer, and ischemic heart disease. The Food and Drug Administration previously approved the company's Heartsbreath test for heart transplant rejection.

SOURCE Menssana Research, Inc