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Medical Instrumentation

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Breath analysis can provide valuable diagnostic information for medical professionals. Cardiac output (the volume of blood pumped by the heart per minute), pulmonary diffusive capacity (the lung’s ability to transfer gases), isotope selective breath CO2 determination, and pulmonary capillary blood volume, among others, are all accessible measurements that traditionally have been carried out using rebreathing mass spectrometers. These systems are delicate, bulky, and expensive and therefore have seen limited application and are primarily in research settings.

Over the past 10 years we have developed patented, spectroscopic solutions to the above measurement challenges. These devices are low cost, miniaturized, and have response times below 50 ms, a key technical hurdle that has limited adoption of these techniques in medical diagnostics. The instruments use novel laser and broadband sources in combination with state-of-the-art photonics operating in absorption or emission modes, depending on the application.