A project carried out at Innsbruck Medical University and at the “Institute for Breath Research of the University of Innsbruck with partner schools in Austria and Poland.


 Who likes to be pricked by a needle? According to our project target an alternative solution will be: Please breathe!

FEM_BREATH encourages pupils to detect volatile organic compounds as disease markers supported by our scientists and develops new medical breath tests. FEM_BREATH supports the interest of pupils for technical studies, and connects the schools involved with university research more closely. The pupils contribute to all research tasks actively, such as scientific literature search, working in clinical environment, lab work, measurements with analytical devices, biostatistical analysis and data interpretation.

FEM_BREATH validates a breath test for measurement of the activity of the enzyme Cytochrom P 450 2C19 (CYP2C19) which is important for patients undergoing cardiovascular therapy with the drug clopidogrel. The activity of CYP2C19 differs in individual patients: depending on its activity, the effectiveness of Clopidogrel therapy can vary. Therefore our breath test delivers important information for the individual patients. 

Furthermore, the analysis of human breath for cancer diagnosis is investigated. Linus Pauling, a double Nobel Prize Laureate, was the breath research pioneer. He discovered that human breath contains around 200 volatile organic compounds. The most prominent breath test allows detection of infection with helicobacter pylori bacteria in the gut – similarly it could be possible to develop breath tests for early cancer diagnosis, diabetes, liver and renal diseases by breath analysis. FEM_BREATH attaches value on equity of both sexes in research. 

FEM_BREATH is an outstanding science center in the Austrian provinces of Vorarlberg and Tyrol to support pupils in natural science and technical studies. It facilitates for pupils to get in touch with our fascinating research field. Partners in the project are the University of Innsbruck, five high schools, the Slovak National Academy of Sciences, Innsbruck Medical University, the University of Applied Sciences in Dornbirn and an international scientific society (


Principal Investigator 

 • Dr. Veronika Ruzsanyi

Innsbruck Medical University and Breath Research Institute of the University of Innsbruck, Dornbirn, Austria

 Management of practical courses

• Dr. Veronika Ruzsanyi

• Martin Klieber MSc

 Project coordinator

 • MMMag. Marco Freek

 Scientific partners 

• Tyrolean Hospital Association, Innsbruck, Austria
• Innsbruck Medical University
• University of Innsbruck
• University of Applied Sciences, Dornbirn, Austria

 Participating schools


• Bundesgymnasium Dornbirn, Dornbirn, Austria
• Akademisches Gymnasium Innsbruck, Innsbruck, Austria
• Gymnasium Adolf-Pichler-Platz, Innsbruck, Austria
• Gymnasium in der Au, Innsbruck, Austria
• Liceum Ogolnoksztalcace, Torun, Poland

Project duration

 • November 1, 2014 until September 30, 2016

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