Laser reveals health clues in human breath
High levels of the molecule nitric oxide can alert doctors to inflammation in critical areas of the body such as the cardiovascular system. In a short video, Gerard Wysocki, an assistant professor of electrical engineering at Princeton, explains how his lab is developing a single system that measures nitric oxide levels in breath, blood and urine. Wysocki's device uses a magnetic field and a high-frequency laser to detect levels of nitric oxide as low as one part per billion in samples from patients. "The analyzer has to be very sensitive in order to look at such a minute amount of nitric oxide," Wysocki said. "That is the main difficulty in measuring important molecules."
The workd is supported in part by Princeton's Eric and Wendy Schmidt Transformative Technology Fund and the National Science Foundation throught the Mid-Infrared Technologies for Health and the Environment (MIRTHE) Center.