Airspace dimension assessment with nanoparticles as a proposed biomarker for emphysema

Thorax. 2021 Oct;76(10):1040-1043. doi: 10.1136/thoraxjnl-2020-214523. Epub 2021 Apr 15.


Airspace dimension assessment with nanoparticles (AiDA) is a novel method to measure distal airspace radius non-invasively. In this study, AiDA radii were measured in 618 individuals from the population-based Swedish CArdiopulmonary BioImaging Study, SCAPIS. Subjects with emphysema detected by computed tomography were compared to non-emphysematous subjects. The 47 individuals with mainly mild-to-moderate visually detected emphysema had significantly larger AiDA radii, compared with non-emphysematous subjects (326±48 µm vs 291±36 µm); OR for emphysema per 10 µm: 1.22 (1.13-1.30, p<0.0001). Emphysema according to CT densitometry was similarly associated with larger radii compared with non-emphysematous CT examinations (316±41 µm vs 291 µm±26 µm); OR per 10 µm: 1.16 (1.08-1.24, p<0.0001). The results are in line with comparable studies. The results show that AiDA is a potential biomarker for emphysema in individuals in the general population.

Keywords: emphysema; exhaled airway markers; imaging/CT MRI; respiratory measurement.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers
  • Emphysema*
  • Humans
  • Nanoparticles*
  • Pulmonary Emphysema* / diagnostic imaging
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed


  • Biomarkers