4.1 Breath Biopsy Exposure Research Kit

Discover biomarkers of effect and quantify exposure related VOCs in Breath using our Breath Biopsy Services

  • Non-invasive, reliable exhaled breath sampling
  • Ideal for longitudinal studies in exposure research
  • Access the volatile component of the body's internal chemical environment
  • Send Breath Biopsy Cartridges to Owlstone Medical for quantitative analysis of exposure-related VOCs and biomarker discovery
  • Comprehensive data analysis and reporting
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Biomarker Discovery and Targeted Analysis of Exposure Related VOCs in Breath

4.1 Breath Biopsy Exposure Research Kits include the consumables required for collection of high-quality breath samples using the ReCIVA Breath Sampler. The package also includes:

  • Comprehensive analysis of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in our Breath Biopsy Laboratory using TD-GC-MS (thermal desorption-gas chromatography-mass spectrometry)
  • Quantification of selected exposure-related VOCs of interest
  • Biomarker discovery by our world class team of data scientists.

Breath Biopsy for Exposure Science

Exhaled Breath for Non-Invasive Exposure Research

Exposure Impact Infographic
Figure 1. The Global Impact of Exposure to Hazardous Environments

The WHO ranks environmental exposures among the top risk factors for chronic disease mortality and a major risk factor of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) such as cancer.

In order to identify the connections between environmental exposure and disease, researchers in the field of exposure science are now increasingly taking a holistic approach that requires the characterization of the totality of individuals’ exposures over the course of a lifetime, which is referred to as the exposome.

Typically this requires ‘top-down’ approach, involving the analysis of repeated blood samples to look for changes in exogenous compounds from exposures, and endogenous compounds linked to the effects of exposure on the body over time.

Breath: A Non-Invasive Alternative to Blood for Exposure Science

Analysis of blood offers a direct measurement of the internal chemical environment of the body. However due to the invasive nature of blood sampling, and the requirement for longitudinal measurements, it is often not an acceptable method of biomonitoring, particularly in pediatric studies.

Exhaled breath offers a non-invasive alternative to blood sampling that allows access to the volatile component of the body’s internal chemical environment. These VOCs pass from the blood and from airways tissue into breath, and could originate directly from external exposures or be biomarkers of effect, related to internal process such as oxidative stress, lipid peroxidation, metabolism and inflammation.

Using Owlstone Medical’s Breath Biopsy Products and Services provides a powerful way to non-invasively make longitudinal measurements of exposure-related VOCs in breath, and discover new exposure related biomarkers.

Analyse exhaled breath VOC biomarkers to determine smoking status


Analysis Options

Biomarker Discovery & Targeted Analysis

Biomarker Discovery 

Once breath samples have been collected using the ReCIVA Breath Sampler and Breath Biopsy Kit, the Breath Biopsy Cartridges are returned to Owlstone Medical's Breath Biopsy Laboratory for analysis, using the pre-paid envelope provided. Our team of expert analytical chemists analyze your samples using our Breath Biopsy TD-GC-MS platform. Our data scientists use a range of statistical analyses including machine learning to develop classification algorithms and identify candidate biomarkers. Once your study is complete, our experts review the results with you. We provide a detailed report, containing all the analysis of your Breath Biopsy samples.

Targeted Analysis of Common Hazardous Exposure VOCs

Owlstone Medical have developed the capability to quantify selected VOCs in breath, including VOCs commonly related to hazardous exposures such as benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylenes (BTEX) at sub PPB concentrations using the Breath Biopsy platform. Concentrations of selected VOCs in each breath sample are included in our final customer report.  

Owlstone Medical’s analytical protocols guarantee repeatability and reproducibility across the full analytical process from breath collection, to transport and sample analysis. Advanced analytical capability also enables Owlstone Medical to discriminate between closely related compounds at very low concentrations.

To enquire about specific VOCs of interest please contact us.

Contact us about your VOCs of interest

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Case Study

Targeted Analysis of BTEX

BTEX compounds (benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and xylenes) are known hazardous VOCs and are commonly compounds of interest in exposure studies. Typically, sources of exposure to BTEX include smoking, vehicle emissions, solid fuel fires, and occupational exposure. Due to the widespread exposure and resulting serious health effects, they are obvious targets for biomonitoring. Owlstone Medical ran a targeted analysis for BTEX compounds on exhaled breath samples collected from 136 people.

Benzene in Breath
Figure 3. Output from Targeted Analysis of Benzene.

The Breath Biopsy Platform was able to quantify BTEX in breath down to PPT concentrations (Figure 2). In this case, we were able to distinguish between smokers and non-smokers based on the concentration of benzene and other markers in breath.

ReCIVA is a reliable and reproducible way to capture VOC biomarkers in breath samples

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Kit Contents

Exposure Research Kit includes:

  • One Breath Biopsy Cartridge
  • One disposable Breath Biopsy Mask
  • Return envelope
  • Biomarker discovery and targeted quantitative analysis of selected exposure-related VOCs perfromed in Owlstone Medical’s Breath Biopsy Laboratory using the Breath Biopsy platform using TD-GC-MS
  • Comprehensive data analysis and reporting

Find out more about Breath Biopsy Kit Contents

Breath Biopsy® Complete Guide - VOCs as Biomarkers for Disease


Get in touch with our team today for 4.1 Breath Biopsy Exposure Research Kit further information and pricing

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