Development of an Exhaled Breath Condensate System For Use During Exercise
Breath condensate, containing a variety of mediators, cytokines, and ions, can be analyzed to study the relation between certain fluid contents and lung inflammatory conditions. Currently, there is no device on the market with a resistance low enough to collect exhaled breath condensate during exercise. To address this issue, a device constructed from copper piping was selected from several other alternatives and designed to meet this unique need. The initial design was altered and modified into a copper V-shaped tube that is surrounded with polyvinyl chloride piping. The space between the copper and the PVC is filled with circulating ice water to cool the copper and create condensation. Additionally, a plunging device was constructed to extract all excess condensate from the system. The prototype was successfully tested and characterized over the past two semesters. The data show that the prototype effectively cools the exhaled air and meets the design criterion of being able to collect 5ml of condensate in seven minutes. In the finale semester, a second device was constructed to allow for optimum condensate collection, with the ability to switch the airflow between the two devices so the plunger can be utilized without halting the study. Lastly, a human studies research protocol to investigate histamine, protein levels, and leukotrienes in the condensate of asthmatics using the device is being prepared.