A breathtaking new medical innovation could see the possibility of testing for diseases to be as simple as doing a breath test thanks to a new laser analyzer. It's called a cavity-enhanced direct optical frequency comb spectroscopy, a complicated name that surely makes up for its hypothetical ease of use.
Patients simply breathe into the device, and every molecule in the sample is assessed by mirrors which bounce a laser beam around, testing each molecule in that puff of air. The device then analyzes the sample in search of illnesses like cancer, asthma, diabetes and kidney malfunction.
"This technique can give a broad picture of many different molecules in the breath all at once," said Jun Ye of the University of Colorado research discovery.
"To date, researchers have identified over 1,000 different compounds contained in human breath," the team wrote in a report in the Optics Express journal.