Medical officials reported on Tuesday that Australian scientists have discovered that the chemical make-up of malaria patients’ breath has distinctive properties, making diagnosis by breath analysis a possibility.

The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO) ran tests on volunteers by infecting them with malaria under controlled circumstances, Efe news agency reported.

Higher levels of four sulphuric compounds were detected in direct correlation with the severity of the infection. The chemicals are not detectable by the human nose, but with the proper instruments, the disease can be diagnosed earlier than with the standard blood examination method, CSIRO explained in a statement.

CSIRO research group leader Stephen Trowell said that what is exciting is that the increase in these chemicals were present at very early stages of infection, when many other methods would have been unable to detect the parasite in the body of people infected with malaria.

Researchers are confident that this discovery will help develop a fast and economical system of malaria detection. Trowell added that they were working with colleagues to develop very specific, sensitive and cheap biosensors that could be used in the clinic and the field to test breath for malaria.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), around 200 million cases of malaria and half a million malaria deaths were recorded in 2013.

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Source: IANS

Armed with a PhD in Alternative Medicine, a graduate degree in Biotechnology, an MSc, and an MBA in Clinical Research and Clinical Pharmacology, Dr Jonathan is a certified practitioner of Alternative Medicine and is actively involved in patient education initiatives. He is also the author of the bestselling book, Outsmart Diabetes. Dr Jonathan loves to share his passion for herbs and other alternative medicinal practices with others through his writing.