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【资讯翻译】Reinventing the Future through Transformative Technology

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发表于 2016-8-4 09:58:47 | 显示全部楼层 |阅读模式
                              
Amid drones, mini mass spectrometry, bedside nucleic acid testing, and micro blood collections, Monday’s s two-part symposium on “Technologies That Could Change the Future of the Clinical Laboratory,” packed a lot of excitement. These sessions focused on not-too-distant-future possibilities for laboratory medicine that could significantly improve patient care—all of which have exciting applications to bringing high-level technology to the most remote laboratories.

In part one of this symposium, Carl Wittwer, MD, PhD, explored rapid RT-PCR techniques that can supplement centralized nucleic acid testing. Traditional PCR assays are usually located in larger regional facilities, which suffer from the same turnaround time delays.  Now, rapid RT-PCR strategies allow for testing at the bedside in <1 min, giving much earlier diagnosis and treatment options. Rapid molecular techniques make point-of-care testing (POCT) more realistic and much more accessible, Wittwer noted.

Similarly, J. Michael Ramsey presented on the use of small, hand-held high pressure mass spectrometers (HPMS) that are emerging and can also offer more flexibility than centralized mass spec facilities. These microfluidic sampling devices can provide results in less than 4 minutes, and can offer real-time results at the point of care. These systems have advanced from once large mass specs to smaller units. This is due to a decreased need for vacuum by operating at 1 torr, enable use of compact mechanical pumps. While these instruments have been used frequently for non-clinical applications, there is certainly space for them in the lineup of medical testing, Ramsey noted.

In the afternoon session, Timothy Amukele, MD, PhD, revealed his projection that laboratories will transport specimens using drones, or unmanned aerial systems (UAS). Access to specialized laboratory testing can be a limiting factor in some healthcare settings, particularly those in geographically challenging or low-resource areas, and delays in treatment due to these restrictions can make diagnostic medicine very difficult. “Adverse outcomes are directly associated with distance from medical care,” Amukele said, making UAS systems ideally suited in these situations. Amukele explained how drone delivery can significantly reduce the length of time required to transport specimens by allowing for unmanned immediate transport by the fastest route possible: air. Amukele also touched on some of the regulatory issues with drones, particularly with the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration. These rules need to be clear in order to allow the safe and legal use of drones, he said.

Jim Nichols, PhD, focused on the advantages and limitations of small-volume collections as an alternative to traditional phlebotomy. When used appropriately, and with adequate quality control, capillary collections offer real opportunities for POCT, including accessibility to a wider test menu, Nichols noted. “It’s best to bring the solution to the patient instead of bringing the patient to the solution,” he said. He also emphasized that there is a significant amount of variability in capillary collection technique and stressed how important standardization in collection can be. New collection devices are being designed to reduce this variability, Nichols added, which will be a cornerstone in the development of small-volume testing.

   

   

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