FARE - Food Allergy Research & Education Logo

Clinical Utility of Handheld Hydrogen Breathalyzer in Identification of Food Sensitivities (AIRE Study)

Study Purpose

Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) is defined as a condition in which an abnormally high amount of coliform bacteria is present in the small bowel and results in premature anaerobic fermentation of carbohydrates before reaching the colon. Commonly recognized causes include gastric achlorhydria, post-surgical bowel stasis, gastrocolic/coloenteric fistulas, and motility disorders leading to bowel stasis.. The current "gold standard" for the diagnosis of SIBO, is a breath test that measures the concentration of hydrogen in response to lactulose, a carbohydrate that is only metabolized by bacteria. However, its accuracy is only about 50% and therefore it is not a very useful test, leading most physicians to treat these patients empirically based on clinical suspicion alone. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the clinical utility of a portable medical device called AIRE, an over-the-counter, commercially available handheld breath analyzer that measures exhaled hydrogen content.

Recruitment Criteria

Accepts Healthy Volunteers

Healthy volunteers are participants who do not have a disease or condition, or related conditions or symptoms

Study Type

An interventional clinical study is where participants are assigned to receive one or more interventions (or no intervention) so that researchers can evaluate the effects of the interventions on biomedical or health-related outcomes.

An observational clinical study is where participants identified as belonging to study groups are assessed for biomedical or health outcomes.

Searching Both is inclusive of interventional and observational studies.

Eligible Ages 18 Years and Over
Gender All
More Inclusion & Exclusion Criteria

Inclusion Criteria:

  • - Adults (18 years of age or older) - Chronic (>3 months) GI symptoms such as nausea, bloating, distention, altered bowel movements, weight loss or abdominal pain with no structural cause other than scleroderma.
  • - Clinical diagnosis of SIBO by patient's gastroenterologist with plans to obtain a lactulose hydrogen breath test.
  • - Ability to tolerate oral intake.
  • - Ability to undergo the LHBT.
  • - Access to a smartphone with Bluetooth capability.

Exclusion Criteria:

  • - History of current or recent antibiotic use within the last 30 days.
  • - History of inflammatory bowel disease.
- Currently following a restrictive diet (for example low Fermentable Oligo-, Di-, Mono-saccharides And Polyols (FODMAP) diet) - Unable to tolerate oral intake

Trial Details

Trial ID:

This trial id was obtained from ClinicalTrials.gov, a service of the U.S. National Institutes of Health, providing information on publicly and privately supported clinical studies of human participants with locations in all 50 States and in 196 countries.


Phase 1: Studies that emphasize safety and how the drug is metabolized and excreted in humans.

Phase 2: Studies that gather preliminary data on effectiveness (whether the drug works in people who have a certain disease or condition) and additional safety data.

Phase 3: Studies that gather more information about safety and effectiveness by studying different populations and different dosages and by using the drug in combination with other drugs.

Phase 4: Studies occurring after FDA has approved a drug for marketing, efficacy, or optimal use.

Lead Sponsor

The sponsor is the organization or person who oversees the clinical study and is responsible for analyzing the study data.

Johns Hopkins University
Principal Investigator

The person who is responsible for the scientific and technical direction of the entire clinical study.

Pankaj Pasricha, MD
Principal Investigator Affiliation Johns Hopkins University
Agency Class

Category of organization(s) involved as sponsor (and collaborator) supporting the trial.

Overall Status Recruiting
Countries United States

The disease, disorder, syndrome, illness, or injury that is being studied.

SIBO, Small Bowel Bacterial Overgrowth Syndrome
Additional Details

Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) is defined as a condition in which an abnormally high amount of coliform bacteria is present in the small bowel and results in premature anaerobic fermentation of carbohydrates before reaching the colon. Commonly recognized causes include gastric achlorhydria (i.e. due to longstanding proton pump inhibitor (PPI) use), post-surgical bowel stasis, and gastrointestinal motility disorders leading to bowel stasis. Although SIBO is commonly suspected, a major limitation in the field is the lack of a highly accurate test for SIBO. The current gold standard relies on the demonstration of an early rise in breath hydrogen concentration in response to an orally ingested carbohydrate (commonly, lactulose) but its accuracy is about 50%. This may be because it is a one-time snapshot with an artificial substrate. Further, it has to be performed in a clinic, takes up to 5 hours and is relatively expensive. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the clinical utility of a portable medical device called AIRE, which is a validated and commercially available handheld breathalyzer that measures hydrogen content in the breath and connects via Bluetooth to an associated smartphone application to provide immediate results and visual feedback after use. H2 concentrations determined by the AIRE device showed significant correlation with those measured by LHBT. The AIRE device therefore provides an alternative way to measure exhaled H2 that has the potential for addressing many of the limitations of the standard breath test.

Arms & Interventions


Experimental: Breath analyzer

Candidates who, after the screening period are eligible to receive the AIRE device.


Device: - Hydrogen content recording

Eligible participants will eat participants' normal, typical diets during the first week of the study. Participants will use the AIRE machine to measure exhaled H2 content before and after two meals each day - the first meal of the day and the last meal of the day. Participants will breathe into the AIRE machine before eating to obtain a baseline value. Once participants have finished eating, participants will breathe into the AIRE machine 30 minutes, 60 minutes, and 90 minutes postprandially. The participants will record participants' food intake and symptoms directly into participants' smartphone via an app that comes with the AIRE device.

Contact a Trial Team

If you are interested in learning more about this trial, find the trial site nearest to your location and contact the site coordinator via email or phone. We also strongly recommend that you consult with your healthcare provider about the trials that may interest you and refer to our terms of service below.

Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, Baltimore, Maryland




Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center

Baltimore, Maryland, 21224

Site Contact

Pankaj J Pasricha, MD



The content provided on clinical trials is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for medical consultation with your healthcare provider. We do not recommend or endorse any specific study and you are advised to discuss the information shown with your healthcare provider. While we believe the information presented on this website to be accurate at the time of writing, we do not guarantee that its contents are correct, complete, or applicable to any particular individual situation. We strongly encourage individuals to seek out appropriate medical advice and treatment from their physicians. We cannot guarantee the availability of any clinical trial listed and will not be responsible if you are considered ineligible to participate in a given clinical trial. We are also not liable for any injury arising as a result of participation.