A novel breath analysis system based on electronic olfaction

Dongmin Guo, Dapeng Zhang, Naimin Li, Lei Zhang, Jianhua Yang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

115 Citations (Scopus)


Certain gases in the breath are known to be indicators of the presence of diseases and clinical conditions. These gases have been identified as biomarkers using equipments, such as gas chromatography and electronic nose (e-nose). GC is very accurate but is expensive, time consuming, and nonportable. E-nose has the advantages of low cost and easy operation, but is not particular for analyzing breath odor, and hence, has a limited application in diseases diagnosis. This paper proposes a novel system that is special for breath analysis. We selected chemical sensors that are sensitive to the biomarkers and compositions in human breath, developed the system, and introduced the odor signal preprocessing and classification method. To evaluate the system performance, we captured breath samples from healthy persons and patients known to be afflicted with diabetes, renal disease, and airway inflammation, respectively, and conducted experiments on medical treatment evaluation and disease identification. The results show that the system is not only able to distinguish between breath samples from subjects suffering from various diseases or conditions (diabetes, renal disease, and airway inflammation) and breath samples from healthy subjects, but in the case of renal failure is also helpful in evaluating the efficacy of hemodialysis (treatment for renal failure).
Original languageEnglish
Article number5523940
Pages (from-to)2753-2763
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2010


  • Breath analysis
  • chemical sensor
  • disease identification
  • electronic olfaction
  • therapy monitoring

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering

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