New Air-Sampler Gadget Looks for Asthma Attack TriggersS

Asthma attacks can come out of nowhere, or so it would seem. A new portable system is trying to predict asthma attacks by sampling the air and identifying likely triggers. The 1-lb. device, designed by a team at Georgia Tech, takes samples every two minutes, looking at recorded air temperature and humidity, and testing the samples for particulates, volatile organic compounds and gases like ozone.

The researchers will ideally find a means to reconstruct the environment immediately before an asthma attack. So far tested by six volunteers, it may be extended to trials in children. Hopefully, one of the triggers of an asthma attack doesn't prove to be "wearing a 1-lb. sensor array around your neck." [New Scientist]