Background: Effective management of patients with diabetic foot infection is a crucial concern. A delay in prescribing appropriate antimicrobial agent can lead to amputation or life threatening complications. Thus, this electronic nose (e-nose) technique will provide a diagnostic tool that will allow for rapid and accurate identification of a pathogen.
Results: This study investigates the performance of e-nose technique performing direct measurement of static headspace with algorithm and data interpretations which was validated by Headspace SPME-GC-MS, to determine the causative bacteria responsible for diabetic foot infection. The study was proposed to complement the wound swabbing method for bacterial culture and to serve as a rapid screening tool for bacteria species identification. The investigation focused on both single and poly microbial subjected to different agar media cultures. A multi-class technique was applied including statistical approaches such as Support Vector Machine (SVM), K Nearest Neighbor (KNN), Linear Discriminant Analysis (LDA) as well as neural networks called Probability Neural Network (PNN). Most of classifiers successfully identified poly and single microbial species with up to 90% accuracy.
Conclusions: The results obtained from this study showed that the e-nose was able to identify and differentiate between poly and single microbial species comparable to the conventional clinical technique. It also indicates that even though poly and single bacterial species in different agar solution emit different headspace volatiles, they can still be discriminated and identified using multivariate techniques.