Accessible Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter October 28, 2011

Investigation of lung cancer biomarkers by hyphenated separation techniques and chemometrics

Bogusław Buszewski, Agnieszka Ulanowska, Tomasz Kowalkowski and Krzysztof Cieśliński


Background: Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) present in breath of lung cancer patients and released by lung cancer cells were determined. As a reference sample breath collected from healthy volunteers and lung segments of cells with proper morphology were used.

Methods: Solid phase microextraction and gas chromato­graphy mass spectrometry (SPME-GC/MS) method was applied for VOC analysis. Statistical methods have been developed to find similarities between patterns of investigated compounds within three populations of samples: exhaled air samples from patients with lung cancer, headspace of lung tissues with healthy and cancer cells.

Results: Quantitative analysis of VOCs in the headspace of lung tissues revealed that cancer cells released higher concentrations of ethanol, acetone, carbon disulfide, dimethyl sulfide, 1-propanol, 2-propanol, 2-butanone and 2-pentanone than healthy tissues. The increase of concentration of the same compounds was observed in the breath of patients with lung cancer in comparison to breath from healthy non-smoking volunteers.

Conclusions: Detection of lung cancer is possible by volatile biomarkers analysis in breath.

Corresponding author: Bogusław Buszewski, Chair of Environmental Chemistry and Bioanalytics, Faculty of Chemistry, Nicolaus Copernicus University, Gagarin Street 7, 87-100 Torun, Poland Phone: +48 56 611 43 08

Received: 2011-5-24
Accepted: 2011-10-6
Published Online: 2011-10-28
Published in Print: 2012-03-01

©2012 by Walter de Gruyter Berlin Boston