Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) of blood serum in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD): A new diagnostic tool ahead?

Zsuzsanna Szalai, Tamás F. Molnár, Dénes Lőrinczy

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12 Citations (Scopus)


Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a major global health challenge with a gloom perspective of being one of the big three cause of death by 2020. No reliable/reproducible biomarker has been identified so far to match the clinically-based staging system (GOLD). Blood samples of 30 subjects divided into 6 groups (no-COPD/-smoker, no-COPD/non-smoker, COPD I, COPD II, COPD III, COPD IV) with 5 patients in each were tested by differential scanning calorimetry. There is a clear 15.4 % difference between the heat flow maxima measured when no-COPD subjects were compared in accordance to their smoking/non-smoking status. Odds ratio of different heat flow in actively smoking COPD patients in stage IV and stage I was 1.61. A reverse tendency is detected in the relevant non-smoking COPD groups. The differences are inconsistent in intermediate stages (COPD II and III). DSC seems to be an applicable and objective method for monitoring nicotine abuse. There is a chance to detect specific typology of thermokinetic patterns in the two extremes of COPD (I vs. IV). Further studies with increased sample size are needed to allow calculations on specificity/sensitivity/positive and negative predictive value of enthalpies and heat flow maximums. The first clinically relevant blood-based COPD marker on the intravascular side of the alveo-capillary screen is demonstrated by our pilot study.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)259-264
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Thermal Analysis and Calorimetry
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2013



  • COPD severity
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC)
  • Global initiative for chronic obstructive lung disease (GOLD)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry

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