Sampling device:

Ar2i has patented a device for sampling expired air (Exp'Air®) which is original due to its ability to specifically sample and concentrate the air at the end of expiration (alveolar air) which is the richest in biomarkers. Sensitivity and reproducibility of the sample is improved (French patent No.99/13582, dated 29/10/99, European patent applied for: No.1 096 245 published on 02/05/2001


Original biomarker:

Thanks to the Exp'Air sampling system described above, we have been able to take rich and representative samples of expired alveolar air. The sample is in the form of a cartridge filled with two layers of adsorbent.

Analysis of these samples, by thermal desorption followed by gas chromatography with mass spectrometry detection, has allowed the following to be underlined:

  • Verification of the Exp'Air® sampling system's reproducibility.
  • Determination of the stress conditions of individuals and thus verification of system response.
  • Discovery of a new, previously undescribed stress biomarker present in the expired alveolar air: trichlorotrifluoroethane and, more generally, fluorinated chloroalkanes (or CFCs or Freon).

The chemical structure of this biomarker has been determined by means of gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. A patent was filed (No.01 14310, dated 6/11/01).

As an example, a quantitative assessment of this biomarker was carried out in comparison with a volatile compound found in alveolar air in fairly stable quantities (internal standard).

Thus far, we have found that the following conditions trigger an increase in the production and elimination of the biomarker:

  • Smoking a cigarette: biochemical stress
  • Physical effort inducing shortness of breath (moderate to intense): physiological stress
  • Playing a fast-paced video game intensively: psychological stress
  • Exposure to pulsed electromagnetic radiation (computer screen, or television): biophysical stress.


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