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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 1  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 209-216

Methods for bioaerosol sampling in tuberculosis and Coronavirus Disease 2019: Potential tool for disease diagnosis and assessment of infectivity

Department of Tuberculosis, The Foundation for Medical Research, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
Ambreen Mohamadmunir Shaikh
The Foundation for Medical Research, Kantilal Sheth Memorial Building, 84-A R G Thadani Marg, Siddharth Nagar, Worli, Mumbai, Maharashtra
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jpdtsm.jpdtsm_84_22

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Respiratory infections such as Tuberculosis (TB) and coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) have tremendously impacted global morbidity and mortality. It is now known that their causative agents have an airborne route of transmission. Clinical diagnosis of these diseases often relies on samples that are difficult to obtain or involve invasive techniques. These limitations have given impetus to research focusing on pathogen detection in bioaerosols. Collection, detection, and quantification of infectious aerosols released by patients can serve as a diagnostic tool while assessing the infectiousness of the pathogen being transmitted. In this review, we have described the various methods of bioaerosol sampling in TB and COVID-19 along with their applications in real-life clinical settings. From aerosol sampling systems and cough chambers to the recent face mask sampling, techniques have advanced over the years moving toward the development of a point-of-care tool for disease diagnosis. Among these, the mask sampling approach has an edge over other methods in terms of convenience and usability. Such sampling techniques, combined with sensitive detection systems have the potential to rapidly detect respiratory pathogens and may ultimately play a role in preventing the spread of these diseases in the community. The review highlights the advances in the application of bioaerosol sampling with a focus on the potential of mask-based bioaerosol sampling method. It also discusses the future research and clinical prospects of bioaerosol sampling.

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