Davis works to find COVID ‘breath signature’

Collage of a realistic, close-up illustration of a COVID-19 virion, Cristina Davis standing in an academic building and a photo of a crowded sidewalk taken from above.

Building on nearly two decades of breath analysis research β€” as well as a 2019 CITRIS Seed Award and a 2020 CITRIS COVID-19 Seed Funding project β€” Cristina Davis, associate dean for research at the UC Davis College of Engineering, is working to develop portable breathalyzer-like devices that can rapidly diagnose COVID-19 and indicate how severe the case may be.

β€œThe idea that exhaled breath could hold diagnostic potential has been around for some time,” said Davis, a professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering. Her research was profiled in The New York Times in July.