Exhaled Breath-Based Test for Ammonia

Market Overview:

Chronic kidney disease (CKD), a condition in which a patient’s kidneys fail to effectively filter blood, is estimated to affect more than one-in-seven Americans placing a significant burden on the US healthcare system costing Medicare over $120 billion in 2017. Commonly called the "silent disease," CKD presents with no symptoms in its early stages; therefore, most patients are diagnosed at an advanced stage leading to poor prognosis. Hemodialysis or kidney transplantation are the treatment options for the most advanced stage of kidney disease known as end-stage renal disease (ESRD). However, due to hemodialysis's deleterious effects on cardiac health,and a lack of available kidneys for transplant, ESRD mortality rates remain high. The ability to frequently monitor kidney function, especially in the later stages of CKD, is the key to providing improved management of this chronic condition.

Clemson University researchers have created an at-home diagnostic platform for chronic kidney disease patients that provides an accurate and immediate measurement of the ammonia concentration in exhaled breath without any electronic components. 


Application                                                                Stage of Development

Clinical Diagnostics, Chronic Kidney                        Utility Application

Disease Monitoring, At-home Testing



  • Non-invasive, real-time sample collection, and immediate results
  • Simple control of breath flow rate and volume providing accurate measurement of breath ammonia concentration in physiological range
  • Reduced analytical complexity & cost
  • At-home/Point-of-care portability & operation


Technical Summary

These compounds are diazocyclobutenes, synthesized via a novel and simple method, and could potentially be active against many different diseases. The compounds are currently demonstrated to be efficacious against Trypanosoma brucei, and have a superior safety profile to some of the currently available drugs. They are active in the nano- to micro-molar range, which is crucial for the development of a pharmaceutical, and although the structure-function relationship is not well understood, they are non-toxic to mammalian cells, a drastic improvement over the arsenic-derived compounds currently used to treat the disease.  

View printable PDF version of this technology 


Inventor:                       Robert Latour, George Chumanov

Patent Type:                  Utility Application

Serial Number:             17/517,919

CURF Ref No:              2021-033


Patent Information:
Biomedical Sciences
For Information, Contact:
Chris Gesswein
Director of Licensing
Clemson University Research Foundation
Riley Rapert
Robert Latour
George Chumanov
Sudha Garimella
Tyler Harvey
Guzeliya Korneva
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