Tuberculosis (TB) is classified as a global health emergency that primarily appears in developing countries. For people in these countries, traveling to a medical clinic multiple times for diagnosis and treatment is often not feasible. Point-of-care diagnostics are necessary in order to appropriately respond to TB in these often impoverished communities. However, current diagnostic methods, including sputum microscopy, are time consuming and expensive. Notably, TB in children is especially difficult to diagnose and treat. Recent studies have identified several breath-based compounds, including methyl nicotinate, that could potentially serve as biomarkers for Mycobacterium tuberculosis. In an effort to verify and expand on these studies, breath samples from potential TB patients in Uganda have been analyzed using GC-MS techniques, including dual-column verification, standardized tests, and mass spectra interpretation. In a preliminary analysis of the data, we have found evidence supporting the correlation between methyl nicotinate and M. tuberculosis for adult patients but reveals no such relationship in child patients.
University / Institution: University of Utah
Format: In Person
SESSION B (10:45AM-12:15PM)
Area of Research: Engineering
Faculty Mentor: Swomitra Mohanty