Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Discovery Of Chemical Profiles For Infectious Diarrhea

Date:
March 1, 2007
Source:
Bristol University
Summary:
Scientists have found, for the first time, that smells from healthy feces and people with infectious diarrhea differ significantly in their chemical composition and could be used to diagnose quickly diseases such as Clostridium difficile.

This photograph depicts Clostridium difficile colonies after 48hrs growth on a blood agar plate; Magnified 4.8X. C. difficile, an anaerobic gram-positive rod, is the most frequently identified cause of antibiotic-associated diarrhea (AAC). It accounts for approximately 15-25% of all episodes of AAC. (Credit: CDC/Dr. Holdeman)
Credit: CDC/Dr. Holdeman

Academics have found, for the first time, smells from healthy feces and people with infectious diarrhea differ significantly in their chemical composition and could be used to diagnose quickly diseases such as Clostridium difficile (C. Diff.).

It is hoped the discovery of these chemical profiles will lead to the development of a device capable of rapid diagnosis at the bedside, saving both time and money.

The study, published online in The FASEB Journal, is the result of a joint collaboration between Dr Chris Probert, Consultant and Reader in Gastroenterology at Bristol University and Professor Norman Ratcliffe at the University of the West of England.

For a long time it has been known that stools have distinctive and different odours if there is an infection. What the researchers have done is to take this 'knowledge' a step further by analysing the odour of healthy donors and patients with gastrointestional disease to see if precise chemical profiles can be established.

The researchers compared feces of healthy donors together with patients with ulcerative colitis, Campylobacter jejuni and Clostridium difficile (C. Diff.) and found their chemical composition were each significantly different.

The next stage of the academics research is to develop a prototype rapid diagnosis device able to be operated by healthcare staff at all levels.

Dr Chris Probert said: "The discovery of chemical profiles is a major step forward in the diagnosis and treatment of people with gastrointestinal disease. Early treatment of Clostridium difficile means patients have a much better chance of survival and fewer complications. However, at present the average length of time taken to diagnose the condition is eight days. "

Two of the most common types of infectious diarrhea are Campylobacter jejuni and Clostridium difficile (C. Diff.). Although less well known than the MRSA superbug, C. Diff. is just as serious, and affects more than 50,000 people each year in England and Wales at a cost to the NHS of around 60 million.

Dr Chris Probert added: "There is a huge potential for a rapid diagnosis device in the UK, 30,000 samples are tested in Bristol alone each year. However, the device could be adapted for use in developing countries where 7,000 children die as a result of diarrhea every day. Our next aim is to produce a prototype device capable of diagnosing at any healthcare setting."

Professor Norman Ratcliffe, from the University of the West of England, added: "There are numerous different kinds of infection that cause diarrhea and a speedy diagnosis would lead to more appropriate use of antibiotics. A rapid diagnosis device has the potential to save lives and reduce the cost burden to the NHS. Early isolation of infectious patients would reduce hospital outbreaks leading to fewer ward/hospital closures."

"Rapid diagnosis of intestinal illnesses is as useful a contribution to public health as one could imagine," said Gerald Weissman, M.D., editor-in-chief of the FASEB Journal. "The method developed by Garner et al is not only useful, but also imaginative."

Last year the team were awarded 353,000 by the Wellcome Trust under their University Translation Award scheme and this study is funded by the grant, which is part of a three-year project.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Bristol University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Bristol University. "Discovery Of Chemical Profiles For Infectious Diarrhea." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 March 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/02/070228185256.htm>.
Bristol University. (2007, March 1). Discovery Of Chemical Profiles For Infectious Diarrhea. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/02/070228185256.htm
Bristol University. "Discovery Of Chemical Profiles For Infectious Diarrhea." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/02/070228185256.htm (accessed July 24, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Idaho Boy Helps Brother With Disabilities Complete Triathlon

Idaho Boy Helps Brother With Disabilities Complete Triathlon

Newsy (July 23, 2014) An 8-year-old boy helped his younger brother, who has a rare genetic condition that's confined him to a wheelchair, finish a triathlon. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Thousands Who Can't Afford Medical Care Flock to Free US Clinic

Thousands Who Can't Afford Medical Care Flock to Free US Clinic

AFP (July 23, 2014) America may be the world’s richest country, but in terms of healthcare, the World Health Organisation ranks it 37th. Thousands turned out for a free clinic run by "Remote Area Medical" with a visit from the Governor of Virginia. Duration: 2:40 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Stone Fruit Listeria Scare Causes Sweeping Recall

Stone Fruit Listeria Scare Causes Sweeping Recall

Newsy (July 22, 2014) The Wawona Packing Company has issued a voluntary recall on the stone fruit it distributes due to a possible Listeria outbreak. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Huge Schizophrenia Study Finds Dozens Of New Genetic Causes

Huge Schizophrenia Study Finds Dozens Of New Genetic Causes

Newsy (July 22, 2014) The 83 new genetic markers could open dozens of new avenues for schizophrenia treatment research. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins