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Philips Develops Breath Test for Diabetics

By: Ayman - Published: Feb 13, 2008 • References: technology.newscientist and engadget
In great news for diabetics, who currently have to take a sample of their blood to measure their glucose levels; a new non-invasive test that is safer and more convenient is being developed by consumer electronics company Philips. The non-invasive blood glucose meter simply monitors the concentration of carbon monoxide in exhaled breath.

The technology comes from the discovery that the amount of carbon monoxide we breathe out is linked to the amount of glucose in our blood. Excess glucose stimulates the production of an enzyme called heme oxygenase, which catalyses reactions that release CO2 and other by-products.

Philips, who is patenting the technology, claims that it is significantly more accurate than past attempts based on sugar's spectroscopic signature. No information is available yet on FDA approval or commercial release.