Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

'GreeneChip' -- New diagnostic tool that rapidly and accurately identifies multiple pathogens

08.12.2006
Researchers in the Greene Infectious Disease Laboratory at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health and their colleagues in the WHO Global Laboratory Network have developed a new tool for pathogen surveillance and discovery—the GreeneChip System.

The GreeneChip is the first tool to provide comprehensive, differential diagnosis of infectious diseases, including those caused by viruses, bacteria, fungi, or parasites. In addition, it is the first tool that can be used on a wide variety of samples, including tissue, blood, urine, and stool, allowing for the rapid identification of pathogens in a variety of laboratory and clinical settings.

The GreeneChip system and its application in an outbreak investigation when other methods failed to implicate a microorganism in a fatal hemorrhagic fever case is described in the January 2007 issue of the CDC’s Emerging Infectious Diseases (online December 6 at www.cdc.gov/EID/13/1/06-0837.htm).

Globalization of travel and trade brings new infectious agents into new contexts. It is increasingly important to be prepared for the unexpected. "Because clinical syndromes are rarely specific for single pathogens, methods that simultaneously screen for multiple agents are important, particularly when early accurate diagnosis can alter treatment or assist in containment of an outbreak," stated W. Ian Lipkin, MD, director of the Greene Infectious Disease Laboratory at the Mailman School’s Department of Epidemiology. He added, "To address the challenges of emerging infectious diseases and biodefense, public health practitioner and diagnosticians need a comprehensive set of tools for pathogen surveillance and detection."

GreeneChip features include a comprehensive microbial sequence database that integrates previously distinct reserves of information about pathogens—for every entry of a pathogen and its properties, the GreeneChip contains a correlate of its genetic makeup.

GreeneChip performance was initially tested by using samples obtained from patients with respiratory disease, hemorrhagic fever, tuberculosis, and urinary tract infections. In all cases, GreeneChip analysis detected an agent that was consistent with the diagnosis obtained by more traditional and slower methods, such as culture or polymerase chain reaction (PCR).

In addition, the GreeneChip was used in the analysis of an unknown sample from a patient with a viral hemorrhagic fever (VHF)-like syndrome. Within six to eight days of infection, Marburg virus causes an acute febrile illness that frequently progresses to liver failure, delirium, shock, and hemorrhage. From October 2004 through July 2005, a Marburg outbreak in Angola resulted in 252 cases of hemorrhagic fever, with 90% of the cases fatal. Although most of the cases were confirmed through PCR as caused by Marburg virus, some were not.

During this outbreak, a healthcare worker from a nongovernmental organization had acute fever and liver failure that culminated in death within one week. PCR assays of RNA extracted from blood showed no evidence of Marburg infection. The same RNA was processed for panviral analysis with the GreeneChip. Still nothing was detected. The RNA was then tested with the GreeneChip for parasites. Analysis identified a Plasmodium (the species of parasite that causes human malaria). Chart review showed that the patient had recently arrived in Angola from a country where malaria was not endemic and that he had not taken malaria prophylaxis. Had the GreeneChip been available in the field to confirm the correct pathogen, the patient could have been treated for malaria.

Differential diagnosis of hemorrhagic fevers poses challenges for clinical medicine and public health. Syndromes associated with agents are not distinctive, particularly early in the course of disease. In some instances, including the case presented above, more than one agent may be endemic in the region with an outbreak. Outbreaks caused by different agents may also overlap in time and geography.

"We are very excited to work with the WHO to make an impact in managing disease outbreaks globally—especially in regions of the world where resources are scarce," stated Thomas Briese, PhD, associate director of the Greene Laboratory.

Implicit in globalization is the risk of known or new agents that appear in novel contexts. In 1996 a presumptive diagnosis of Ebola viral hemorrhagic fever in two children who had recently returned to New York City from West Africa resulted in closing a hospital emergency room. For example, one of the children died of cardiac failure caused by plasmodium falciparum (malaria). Therapeutic options for treatment of VHF are limited; however, rapid isolation if infected persons is critical to curb contagion. In contrast, human-to-human transmission is not a primary concern with malaria and early, specific therapy can have a profound effect on illness and death. The GreeneChip provides unprecedented opportunities for unbiased pathogen discovery and reduction of illness and death caused by infectious disease.

Randee Sacks Levine | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.cdc.gov/EID/13/1/06-0837.htm
http://www.columbia.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht 3D images of cancer cells in the body: Medical physicists from Halle present new method
16.05.2018 | Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg

nachricht Better equipped in the fight against lung cancer
16.05.2018 | Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Explanation for puzzling quantum oscillations has been found

So-called quantum many-body scars allow quantum systems to stay out of equilibrium much longer, explaining experiment | Study published in Nature Physics

Recently, researchers from Harvard and MIT succeeded in trapping a record 53 atoms and individually controlling their quantum state, realizing what is called a...

Im Focus: Dozens of binaries from Milky Way's globular clusters could be detectable by LISA

Next-generation gravitational wave detector in space will complement LIGO on Earth

The historic first detection of gravitational waves from colliding black holes far outside our galaxy opened a new window to understanding the universe. A...

Im Focus: Entangled atoms shine in unison

A team led by Austrian experimental physicist Rainer Blatt has succeeded in characterizing the quantum entanglement of two spatially separated atoms by observing their light emission. This fundamental demonstration could lead to the development of highly sensitive optical gradiometers for the precise measurement of the gravitational field or the earth's magnetic field.

The age of quantum technology has long been heralded. Decades of research into the quantum world have led to the development of methods that make it possible...

Im Focus: Computer-Designed Customized Regenerative Heart Valves

Cardiovascular tissue engineering aims to treat heart disease with prostheses that grow and regenerate. Now, researchers from the University of Zurich, the Technical University Eindhoven and the Charité Berlin have successfully implanted regenerative heart valves, designed with the aid of computer simulations, into sheep for the first time.

Producing living tissue or organs based on human cells is one of the main research fields in regenerative medicine. Tissue engineering, which involves growing...

Im Focus: Light-induced superconductivity under high pressure

A team of scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg investigated optically-induced superconductivity in the alkali-doped fulleride K3C60under high external pressures. This study allowed, on one hand, to uniquely assess the nature of the transient state as a superconducting phase. In addition, it unveiled the possibility to induce superconductivity in K3C60 at temperatures far above the -170 degrees Celsius hypothesized previously, and rather all the way to room temperature. The paper by Cantaluppi et al has been published in Nature Physics.

Unlike ordinary metals, superconductors have the unique capability of transporting electrical currents without any loss. Nowadays, their technological...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Save the date: Forum European Neuroscience – 07-11 July 2018 in Berlin, Germany

02.05.2018 | Event News

Invitation to the upcoming "Current Topics in Bioinformatics: Big Data in Genomics and Medicine"

13.04.2018 | Event News

Unique scope of UV LED technologies and applications presented in Berlin: ICULTA-2018

12.04.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Supersonic waves may help electronics beat the heat

18.05.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Keeping a Close Eye on Ice Loss

18.05.2018 | Information Technology

CrowdWater: An App for Flood Research

18.05.2018 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>