Can your wind reveal if you have cancer? Scientists use fermented stools and gut-smelling pills to help spot disease Scientists are fermenting feces in conditions found in the intestine They hope this will help find a link between gas and human health They also have a more direct method to do this with sensing capsules Capsules can send data from inside the gut direct to a mobile phone Gases can be markers for colon cancer and irritable bowel syndrome Scientists believe the gases in our body can reveal a range of diseases such as colon cancer and irritable bowel syndrome. But attempting to 'scientifically analyse people's farts' - either by using a breathalyser or looking at feces – can prove tricky. Now one engineer claims he has come up with two methods to do this that are far more effective; fecal fermentation and gas-sensing capsules. http://i.***************/i/pix/2015/03/12/26942E3B00000578-2992212-image-m-10_1426191485502.jpg The 10mm long gas-monitoring capsules, predicted by Professor Kalantar-zadeh to cost less than $10 (£6.70) each, look like pills that patients can swallow. The capsules measure the concentration of intestinal gases using a built-in gas sensor, microprocessor and wireless high-frequency transmitter Fecal fermentation involves incubating feces in conditions similar to those found in the large intestine. To do this scientists place a spoonful of feces in a jar, and place a lid on it. The lid contains a sensor that detects the molecules of gas fuming inside the container. Electrical engineer Kourosh Kalantar-Zadeh described the jars inside his laboratory 'fecal inocula.' His team are using the jars to see if there is a link between gas and human health. 'One of the samples is actually myself,' he told NPR. 'The results are amazing.' Professor Kalantar-zadeh's team at Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology in Australia have also developed a more direct method using gas sensing capsules. http://i.***************/i/pix/2015/03/12/26941E8400000578-2992212-image-a-8_1426191463416.jpg http://i.***************/i/pix/2015/03/12/26941E9E00000578-2992212-image-a-7_1426191463169.jpg The technology, they say, could provide an unparalleled insight into the gases' inside the body and their possible link to diseases. Pictured on the right are close-up views of bacteria that produce the gases These capsules can send data from inside the gut direct to a mobile phone. The 10mm long gas-monitoring capsules, predicted by Professor Kalantar-zadeh to cost less than $10 (£6.70) each, look like pills that patients can swallow. The technology, they say, could provide an unparalleled insight into the gases inside the body and their possible link to diseases. The capsules measure the concentration of selected intestinal gases using a built-in gas sensor, microprocessor and wireless high-frequency transmitter, before passing out of the body. COULD SNIFFING FLATULENCE BE GOOD FOR YOU? The smell of flatulence has secret health benefits - and could help stave off cancer, strokes, heart attacks and dementia, scientists have revealed. Hydrogen sulfide is one of a number of potent smelly gases produced by bacteria as it breaks down food in the gut. It is toxic in large doses but in tiny amounts it helps protect cells and fight illness, according to experts at Exeter University. When cells become stressed by disease they try to draw in enzymes to generate their own minute quantities of hydrogen sulphide. The chemical helps to preserve mitochondria, which drive energy production in blood vessel cells and regulate inflammation, and without it the cell can switch off and die. Last year, researchers have come up with a new compound named AP39 to assist the body in producing just the right amount of hydrogen sulphide. They believe it will help prevent or reverse mitochondrial damage, which is a key strategy in treating conditions such as stroke, heart failure, diabetes, arthritis, dementia and ageing. Professor Kalantar-zadeh said current non-invasive methods of measuring intestinal gas, such as breath testing, were unreliable. 'We know gut microorganisms produce gases as a by-product of their metabolism, but we understand very little about how that affects our health,' he said. 'Being able to accurately measure intestinal gases could accelerate our knowledge about how specific gut microorganisms contribute to gastrointestinal disorders and food intake efficiency 'These high-tech capsules could also help people work out precisely how particular foods affect their guts,' he added.