Electronic nose to tackle TB diagnosis

A prototype is expected to undergo clinical testing from late 2013. 

Ultimately, the highly portable and battery-powered device would have a price tag of less than $29.

“Our goal is to make the Electronic Nose widely available in poor, remote areas where tuberculosis often breeds and spreads, devastating so many lives,” lead researcher Ranjan Nanda said.

TB is currently detected through sputum tests.

The project was last week awarded a $917,184 grant by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and Grand Challenges Canada.

The researchers said it might be possible to use the technology for early detection of other diseases such as lung cancer or pneumonia.