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Tuberculosis can be diagnosed by analysis of exhalation before the symptoms manifest themselves

Researchers from the Institute of Theoretical and Experimental Biophysics of the Russian Academy of Sciences together with colleagues from the Central Research Institute of Tuberculosis proposed to determine if Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the causative agent of tuberculosis, is present in the body, by the number and composition of immunoglobulin A in the air exhaled by persons who could develop the illness. A scientific article is published in the Journal of Breath Research. The work is supported by a grant from the RSF.
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The authors of the work suggested a way to simplify collection of 'Koch's bacillus', as the bacteria is also called, from the lungs and making it less traumatic for patients. To achieve this, they tried to collect bacteria from air, what patients exhaled, with modified Petryanov filters. It turned out that there are no microbes and their DNA in the exhaled microdroplets of the pulmonary fluid, but there are immunoglobulins A, and among them antibodies that are produced only if Mycobacterium tuberculosis is present in the body.

Immunoassay used in the procedure takes just a few minutes thanks to a number of technical innovations developed by the authors. It allows to detect tuberculosis at the early stages, when the symptoms characteristic of the disease have not yet developed.

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