NASA’s recently developed electronic nose,
intended for air quality monitoring on Space Shuttle Endeavour and
later the International Space Station, has a rather fortunate and
unintended secondary role. In addition to being able to detect
contaminants within about one to 10,000 parts per million, scientists
have discovered it can also sniff out the difference in odor between
normal and cancerous brain cells — not a new use
for e-noses, but certainly one that helps to advance the field. Groups
such the as Brain Mapping Foundation, City of Hope Cancer Center, and
Jet Propulsion Laboratory have been testing the technology and hope it
one day leads to a new understanding of cancer development. We’d also
wager it can accurately detect what cologne or perfume you’re wearing,
another unintended side effect and probably not as fun of a party trick
as it seems.
Filed under: Misc. Gadgets
NASA’s new e-nose can detect scent of cancerous brain cells originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 02 May 2009 11:41:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.