New research appearing online today in Clinical Chemistry, the journal of AACC, shows that a handheld mobile device can check patients’ HIV status with just a finger prick, and synchronize the results in real time with electronic health records. This technology takes a step toward providing remote areas of the world with diagnostic services traditionally available only in centralized healthcare settings.
Of the 34 million people infected with HIV worldwide, 68% of them live in sub-Saharan Africa, with South and Southeast Asia bearing the second greatest burden of disease. Many HIV-infected people in these regions are unable to get tested or treated because they can’t easily travel to centralized healthcare centers. This creates an extreme economic burden on already-poor nations, with the epidemic estimated to cause a 1.5% annual loss in gross domestic product each year for the worst-affected countries. It has also created 16.6 million AIDS orphans—children who have lost one or both parents to the disease.
A low-cost mobile device that performs HIV testing could help combat these trends, and the overall global epidemic, by enabling the diagnosis and treatment of HIV-infected people in resource-limited settings. In this study, a team including Curtis D. Chin, PhD, and Yuk Kee Cheung, PhD, designed a device that captures all the essential functions of enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays, the most commonly used laboratory diagnostic for HIV. The authors show that the device performs laboratory-quality HIV testing in 15 minutes using finger-pricked whole blood.
The device also detects weakly positive samples, and uses cellphone and satellite networks to automatically synchronize test results with patient health records from anywhere in the world. Because of this real-time data upload, this mobile device will allow policymakers and epidemiologists to monitor disease prevalence across geographical regions quickly and effectively. This could improve effectiveness in allocating medications to different communities, and patient care in general.
Dr. Nader Rifai, editor in chief of Clinical Chemistry, states, "This is a perfect example of how ingenuity and good science can effectively address a real and serious medical problem."
The American Association for Clinical Chemistry, AACC, is a leading international medical society dedicated to improving healthcare through laboratory medicine. With more than 9,000 clinical laboratory professionals, physicians, research scientists, and other members involved in developing tests and directing laboratory operations, AACC brings the laboratory community together with programs that advance knowledge, expertise, and innovation.
Clinical Chemistry is the leading international journal of clinical laboratory science, providing 2,000 pages per year of peer-reviewed papers that advance the science of the field. With an impact factor of 7.9, Clinical Chemistry covers everything from molecular diagnostics to laboratory management.
Molly Polen | Source: Newswise
Further information: www.aacc.org
More articles from Life Sciences:
Drought makes Borneo’s trees flower at the same time
22.05.2013 | Universität Zürich
Researchers find genetic tie to improved survival time for pulmonary fibrosis
22.05.2013 | University of Colorado Denver
A fried breakfast food popular in Spain provided the inspiration for the development of doughnut-shaped droplets that may provide scientists with a new approach for studying fundamental issues in physics, mathematics and materials.
The doughnut-shaped droplets, a shape known as toroidal, are formed from two dissimilar liquids using a simple rotating stage and an injection needle. About a millimeter in overall size, the droplets are produced individually, their shapes maintained by a surrounding springy material made of polymers.
Droplets in this toroidal shape made ...
Frauhofer FEP will present a novel roll-to-roll manufacturing process for high-barriers and functional films for flexible displays at the SID DisplayWeek 2013 in Vancouver – the International showcase for the Display Industry.
Displays that are flexible and paper thin at the same time?! What might still seem like science fiction will be a major topic at the SID Display Week 2013 that currently takes place in Vancouver in Canada.
High manufacturing cost and a short lifetime are still a major obstacle on ...
University of Würzburg physicists have succeeded in creating a new type of laser.
Its operation principle is completely different from conventional devices, which opens up the possibility of a significantly reduced energy input requirement. The researchers report their work in the current issue of Nature.
It also emits light the waves of which are in phase with one another: the polariton laser, developed ...
Innsbruck physicists led by Rainer Blatt and Peter Zoller experimentally gained a deep insight into the nature of quantum mechanical phase transitions.
They are the first scientists that simulated the competition between two rival dynamical processes at a novel type of transition between two quantum mechanical orders. They have published the results of their work in the journal Nature Physics.
“When water boils, its molecules are released as vapor. We call this ...
Researchers have shown that, by using global positioning systems (GPS) to measure ground deformation caused by a large underwater earthquake, they can provide accurate warning of the resulting tsunami in just a few minutes after the earthquake onset.
For the devastating Japan 2011 event, the team reveals that the analysis of the GPS data and issue of a detailed tsunami alert would have taken no more than three minutes. The results are published on 17 May in Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences, an open access journal of ...
22.05.2013 | Life Sciences
22.05.2013 | Ecology, The Environment and Conservation
22.05.2013 | Earth Sciences
17.05.2013 | Event News
15.05.2013 | Event News
08.05.2013 | Event News