Technology detects patients more prone to side effects of radiotherapy

Spectrometry electronic nose and analyze chemicals in the stool of patients to predict risk of adverse effects

Researchers at the University of Warwick, UK, demonstrated how two technologies can predict more accurately which patients with cancer are more likely to suffer from the side effects of radiotherapy.

The research, published in the journal Sensors, describes how the use of an electronic nose and a fresh examination spectrometry, called FAIMS (Field Asymmetric Ion Mobility Spectrometry), may help identify people at greater risk.

The techniques are based on the analysis of the relationship between levels of toxicity in the gut and likely to experience side effects.

"In simplest terms, we believe that the levels of toxicity result from differences in gut microflora of a patient. By using these technologies can analyze stool specimens and smell chemicals that are produced by this microflora to better predict the risk of side effects ", explains the researcher Ramesh Arasaradnam.

"In essence, we will be able to predict those who are likely to develop serious side effects related bowel. This will enable the development of a targeted therapy for these high-risk groups," explains Arasaradnam.

The success of the pilot study will lead to extensive research on the possible uses of these technologies and can be really important to help doctors advise patients that will receive pelvic radiotherapy, before the start of treatment.