US Patent 7,421,882
United States Patent and Trademark Office
University of Iowa Research Foundation (Iowa City, IA, US)
A method of diagnosing the health of an individual by collecting a breath sample from the individual and measuring the amount of each of a plurality of analytes in the sample. The amount of each analytes is measured by fitting a time response curve of a sample-evaluation fuel cell in which the fuel cell sample electrode is contacted with the sample with the analysis based on a function of standard time response curves for an equivalent fuel cell configuration obtained separately for each of the analytes on a fuel cell with equivalent construction as sample-evaluation fuel cell. Each of the plurality of analytes is generally indicative of an aspect of the individual's health. Suitable analytes include, for example, inorganic compounds as well as compositions that exhibit negative reduction reactions at least for a portion of the time response curve. In particular, acetone exhibits a negative potential/current peak when it is an analyte in a fuel cell in an sample electrode with a counter electrode exposed to oxygen, which may or may not be introduced in the form of air. Various forms of analysis to estimate acetone concentrations in the breath can be used.
Leddy, Johna and Haverhals, Luke M. Breath-based sensors for non-invasive molecular detection. US Patent 7,421,882 filed December 16, 2005 and issued September 09, 2008. https://ir.uiowa.edu/patents/462