Beginning of 2017, a scientific poster co-written by Dermscan, was presented to the Francophone pneumology Congress 2017 in Marseille, France.
Named “Mineralogical analysis of Alveolar/Bronchiolar Lavage (ABL) of healthy subjects by automatic detection of particles”, the study aimed to evaluate the interest of reference ABL data on healthy subjects in order to compare them to those of pathological subjects (following a professional or environmental exposure).
The ABL is a simple and minimally invasive exam, that enable the collection of mineral particles from peripheral airways. To interpret the mineralogical analysis results, it is crucial to compare them to those of the reference subjects with known exposures.
For this purpose, Dermscan has recruited 20 healthy volunteers aged from 20 to 50 years without respiratory illness neither sarcoidosis. Fibrescopy and ABL were performed in the endoscopy unit of the Saint-Joseph Saint Luc hospital (Lyon, France).
The particles from ABL were examined by Scanning Electron Microscope equipped with variable-pressure chamber (SEM-VP). The objective was to validate this exam for which more than 1000 particles were analysed by patient and then classified according to their chemical composition.
The total number of particles (expressed in ml of ABL) is estimated by the dispersive analysis method in automatic energy (EDX). The below scheme illustrates that the ABL of a patient professionally exposed to dusts from cutting and pumicing of Corian presents a charge in particles higher than those from non-exposed healthy subjects.
Thus, the acquisition of ABL data on a group of control subjects and the easy and cheap establishment of the SEM-VP enable considering the exploration of patients’ exposures and their link with a given pathology suspected of potential factors of environmental risks.