Additional Areas of Research
- Breath testing for liver diseases provides a safe, non-invasive method of assessing liver function by continuously measuring the by-product of 13C- methacetin metabolism in the breath of test subjects.
- The test also provides relatively accurate measure of fibrosis and inflammation levels.
- Breath testing avoids traumatic liver biopsy and extensive blood tests.
- In 2013, 29 million in EU and over 30 million in the USA have liver disease (1 in 10 Americans).
“The new test could be used to assess prognosis from the earliest stages of liver disease to cirrhosis, to help doctors determine whether a cirrhotic patient has enough liver function to undergo a surgical procedure, to prioritize patients for liver transplantation, and perhaps to decide when patients need to start therapy for chronic viral hepatitis…”Gadi Lalazar, M.D., Hebrew University- Hadassah Medical Center, Jerusalem
Traumatic Brain Injury (mTBI)
Incidence of sport-induced concussion or mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI), has increased considerably during the last decade. The majority of the research into mTBI has been directed toward the neuropsychological aspect of the injury, and not until recently has focus been placed on the pathophysiology of mTBI in the sport arena. Systemic physiological effects of mTBI include altered HR variability and decreased baroreflex sensitivity, cellular metabolism, and cerebral blood flow. Current treatment guidelines for mTBI focus on neuropsychological outcomes of pre- and post-injury testing and a gradual return-to-play protocol.
The most influential vascular modulator of cerebral blood flow velocity (CBFV) is arterial carbon dioxide (PaCO2), and the resultant reaction of changes in PaCO2 is termed cerebrovascular reactivity (CVR). CVR is impaired after a traumatic brain injury and various methods and procedures are used to assess CVR in healthy and diseased subjects. CO2 inhalation, acetazolamide, hyperventilation (HV), and breath holding (BH) are commonly used in analyzing CVR. BH and HV have been shown to be reliable and provide reproducible results in measuring CVR and have led to increased interest by breath analysis researchers.
Methods: Thirty-one athletes (16–25 years old) participated in this study. The participants were divided into two groups—healthy and mTBI. Participants in the mTBI group suffered an mTBI within 7 days.
Conclusions: The data suggests that normal CVR responses may be disrupted in the days immediately after occurrence of mTBI. Transcranial Doppler ultrasonography combined with expired gas measurements provides a useful method for assessing CVR impairment after mTBI. Further research, including serial monitoring after mTBI and analysis of CVR response to exercise, is warranted.