Navigation Links
Investigating causes of asthma attacks: New sensor system monitors environmental exposure
Date:1/22/2008

Researchers at the Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI) have developed a sensor system that continuously monitors the air around persons prone to asthma attacks. Worn in the pockets of a vest, the new system could help researchers understand the causes of asthma attacks.

We are investigating whether we can go back after an asthma attack and see what was going on environmentally when the attack started, said Charlene Bayer, a GTRI principal research scientist.

This research was supported by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and initial funding from the GTRI Independent Research and Development (IRAD) program.

Although no one fully understands why certain people get asthma, doctors know that once a person has it, his/her lungs can overreact to environmental stimuli causing chest tightness or breathlessness, known as an asthma attack.

The new sensor system measures airborne exposure to formaldehyde, carbon dioxide, ozone, nitrogen dioxide, temperature, relative humidity and total volatile organic compounds (VOCs). VOCs are emitted as gases from products such as paints, cleaning supplies, pesticide formulations, building materials and furnishings, office equipment and craft materials.

In addition to detecting the seven environmental stimuli mentioned above, a special mesh filter collects particles. A pump pulls air through the filter so that the quantity of particles can be measured at the end of the sampling period. The composition of the collected particulate can also be analyzed in the laboratory.

The battery-powered system fits into the pocket of a vest and contains commercially available sensors that were integrated into a single system by Mark Jones, chief executive officer of Keehi Technologies.

The device weighs less than one pound including batteries and it takes a measurement of air every two minutes, stores the data in on-board memory and then sleeps to conserve battery power, said Jones.

Bayer and GTRI Research Scientist Robert Hendry calibrated and tested the sensors in a large room-sized chamber that simulates real-world environmental conditions inside buildings. Coupled with sensitive mass spectrometers, the chamber allows the changing indoor air chemistry to be studied in detail.

The sensor system is designed to be comfortably worn in the pockets of a vest throughout the day and kept at the bedside while sleeping at night. Another vest pocket contains an electronic peak flow meter to periodically measure pulmonary function. When experiencing an asthma attack, the vest wearer notes what time it occurred and Bayer can examine the levels of the chemical compounds at that time.

Six adult volunteers have tested the vest for comfort and the effectiveness of the sensor system under actual use conditions. And that has already brought benefits for one volunteer, whose vest detected higher volatile organic exposures in his home than anywhere else. That led researchers to discover a pollutant pathway from the volunteers basement garage into the living areas that was allowing automobile exhaust and gasoline fumes to invade the house.

With future funding, Bayer hopes to develop a smaller and more sensitive sensor system, test the current vest in population studies of asthmatic children and develop software to process the population studies data as it is collected.

With this system we can determine what children are exposed to at home, at school and outside where they play, said Bayer. Chances are there are some overreaching compounds that seem to trigger asthma attacks in more children.


'/>"/>

Contact: Abby Vogel
avogel@gatech.edu
404-385-3364
Georgia Institute of Technology Research News
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. Micromet Receives Regulatory Approval to Conduct a Phase 2 Clinical Trial Investigating MT103 (MEDI-538) in Patients with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia
2. Consumer Specialty Products Association Responds to European Study Investigating Spray Products and Asthma
3. UT Southwestern investigating hypothermic technique in treating pediatric head injuries
4. Gentler chemotherapy before stem cell transplant causes long-term remission of follicular lymphoma
5. International team gets new award to research the causes of bladder problems
6. Modest gain in visceral fat causes dysfunction of blood vessel lining in lean, healthy humans
7. Landmark Report: Excess Body Fat Causes Cancer
8. IOM Workshop Calls for Greater Research Focus on Environmental Causes of Autism
9. U-M scientists find new causes for neurodegeneration
10. Research shows how genetic mutation causes epilepsy in infants
11. New discovery may improve treatment of one of the worlds leading causes of blindness
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Investigating causes of asthma attacks: New sensor system monitors environmental exposure
(Date:2/9/2016)... Altamonte Springs, FL (PRWEB) , ... February 09, ... ... nation’s leading innovative specialty pharmacies, announces today the continuation of the ‘Pay It ... donations for each prescription referral received at our specialty pharmacy. , “Since ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... ... , ... The Journal of Pain Research has published the commentary ... As corresponding author Dr John F. Peppin says “Terminology matters, yet little attention has ... patients. ‘Chronic cancer pain’ and ‘chronic non-cancer pain’ are replete in the literature; ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... ... February 09, 2016 , ... ... to expand access to affordable hearing aids , increase industry transparency, and ... in the United States. , “For the average consumer, the hearing aid industry ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... Maui, Hawaii (PRWEB) , ... February 09, 2016 , ... ... to Maui to lead a photographic adventure on the island, June 14-19, 2016, hosted ... Unforgettable Events series. , After a successful debut in 2015, the ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... ... February 09, 2016 , ... i2i Systems, an early innovator and developer of ... in the latest KLAS report, Population Health Management 2015: How Far Can Your Vendor ... population health management (PHM). The latest KLAS Report, leveraging over 200 user interviews, ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/10/2016)... India , February 10, 2016 ... The "Personalized Medicine, Targeted Therapeutics and Companion Diagnostic ... Trends, Technologies, Participants, and Environment" research report indicates ... worth over $149 billion by 2020 growing at ... up of companion diagnostics and targeted therapeutics and ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... Feb. 9, 2016  Landauer, Inc. (NYSE: LDR ... measurement and monitoring, outsourced medical physics services and high ... its fiscal 2016 first quarter ended December 31, 2015. ... Fiscal 2016 First Quarter Highlights , Revenue of ... quarter of 2015 , Domestic Radiation Measurement services revenues ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... , Feb. 9, 2016  Jazz Pharmaceuticals plc ... report its 2015 fourth quarter and full year financial ... of the financial markets.  Company management will host a ... p.m. EST/9:30 p.m. GMT to discuss fourth quarter and ... and financial update and guidance for 2016 financial results. ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: