The analysis of breath-print, has been proposed as an attractive alternative to investigate possible biomarkers of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). The aim of the present study was to discriminate between healthy subjects, patients with COPD associated with smoking (COPD-S) and patients with COPD associated with household air pollution (COPD-HAP).
A cross-sectional study of 294 participants was conducted, 88 with smoking associated COPD, 28 associated with HAP and 178 healthy subjects. Breath-print analysis was performed by using the Cyranose 320 electronic nose. Group data were evaluated by Principal Component Analysis (PCA), Canonical Discriminant Analysis (CDA) and Support Vector Machine (SVM) and the test’s diagnostic power by means of ROC (Receiver Operating Characteristic) curves.
The results indicated that the breath-print of patients with COPD is different from the one of healthy subjects explaining a variability of 93.8% with a correct prediction of 97.8% and correct classification of 100%,also positive and negative predictive value of 96.5 and 100% respectively. Furthermore, the breath-print of exhaled breath from patients with COPD-S and COPD-HAP does not present any difference.
The breath-print of exhaled breath from patients with COPD-S and COPD-HAP does not present any difference, which demonstrates that the breath-print is related to the disease and not to causality. With these results, the analysis of the breath-print of COPD is proposed as an alternative for a screening method in future clinical applications.