"accurate in 88% of cases"
Come on Register: your readers expect something rather above the level of a Daily Mail article. What percentage of false-positives, and what percentage of false-negatives?
Researchers at the University of New South Wales have used a device called the CyraNose 3200 to sniff out malignant mesothelioma, a nasty form of cancer often caused by exposure to asbestos. The CyraNose is a commercial device used to detect chemical vapours. Named for the legendarily-large-of-proboscis French writer, the …
Could this be applied to urine samples too?
If it works eventually technology like this could be available in GP practices and virtual eliminate the need to wait for results. Or if your being cared for in your own home on the spot results (assuming the kit is portable). Lots of potential, just needs teams like these to do all the grunt work first.
There is this Uni hospital I know in the Netherlands which is smack in the middle of an area where heaps of people have worked for the local chemical plant. These guys have recently decided that they can comfortably hide behind the statue of limitations (30 years), despite in earlier years acknowledging that such cancers typically only show up beyond that time.
I wonder if I could get the hospital to start a study of the ex employees who have not yet succumbed to the illness. In some people it progresses much slower, first it scars the lungs so they lose their effectiveness but do not yet fail - the cancer sometimes doesn't happen until much later (if it does, the unfortunate sufferer knows he'll be history in under 6 months, and it's a crap way to die).
Might help the chemical plant to worry about government regulation if they continue to be creative..
OK, shaky semantics.
What I meant to say is that you will have a very horrible time until you die. For some illnesses you get pallative care that involves managing the pain by keeping you nice and hazy until the end, but you cannot medicate way an inability to breath. That's also why smoking is such an evil thing to do to people - same end result, just takes longer.
It "learned" what to look for based on the test results between fit and ill patients.
Which pretty much turns the usual approach of "find out what chemicals it produces and look for those"
I'll guess if they dump it's memory they will actually find a *pattern* of above and below average chemical levels
BTW mesothelioma has historically been *very* difficult to diagnose (except at autopsy, which is unhelpful for treatment) as it's not a "lump" tumor but attacks the sac enclosing the lung.
While the idea of the DARPA "tricorder" is a bit far fetched (well they would not be DARPA if it was not near Mission:Impossible status) I think we are on the verge of a quiet revolution in non invasive diagnostics. Breath and pictures of the eye seem to be the front runners so far but I'll bet sweat, spit and urine can go *much* further than they have so far.
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