2017 Company Profiles: QuinTron Instrument Company, Inc.
Take the Guesswork Out of Gas Work
Established in 1962, QuinTron Instrument Company, a family-owned business, manufactured gas chromatographs (GC) for respiratory gas analysis in the pulmonary field. A gastroenterologist approached QuinTron in the 1970s, seeking analysis of trace concentrations of hydrogen, which led the company to manufacture GCs specifically for breath tests in 1978.
In 1981, QuinTron introduced its first analyzer for this special application and from that time forward, it became dedicated to this special field and developed multiple lines of analyzers and accessories that are marketed around the world.
Breath testing with QuinTron’s analyzers and patented collection devices provides economic and safe alternatives, compared to more invasive procedures, such as blood tests, biopsies and/or obtaining aspirate for culturing.
Driven by Research, Guided by Science
Breath tests were first used as an indicator that complex sugars were not broken down and absorbed in the small intestine during the digestion of foods. Hydrogen (H2) was measured in the breath after administering a dose of the sugar to be studied. The widest application of the test was for lactose intolerance. The hydrogen breath-test (often referred to as the HBT or BHT) replaced a blood test, which was based on the absence of a blood glucose response following lactose ingestion. The blood test is not as reliable as the breath hydrogen test, since it produces a greater proportion of false-negative and false-positive tests. When the reliability and simplicity of the breath-H2 test was demonstrated with lactose, it was soon applied to other complex sugars like fructose (from fruits), maltose (from some starches) and sucrose (common table sugar, which is rarely absorbed). It has also been used to indicate that some people are unusually sensitive to sorbitol, an artificial sweetener used in dietetic candy, sugar-free chewing gum and other dietetic foods.
Initially, trace gases were analyzed only for hydrogen. As studies indicated that methane (CH4) was also an important intestinal gas to be considered, QuinTron developed analyzers that measure breath samples for both hydrogen and methane. The addition of methane measurement provides practitioners with the most comprehensive information to help treat their patients with carbohydrate malabsorption and small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO).
Practitioners have a choice in how to provide breath testing to their patients. Some practitioners prefer to have a QuinTron BreathTracker on-site, which allows them to have immediate information to best treat their patients. Other practitioners elect to participate in a kit program that allows them to dispense breath test kits to their patients, which permits the patients to easily collect their own samples at home or work. The samples are then submitted to a facility where analysis is performed.
Most Common Tests
• Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO)
• Lactose Intolerance
• Fructose Intolerance
• Sucrose Intolerance
• Xylose Intolernace