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DARK Daily Laboratory and Pathology News

DARK Daily is an e-briefing service providing up-to-the minute news of relevance for anyone working in diagnostic medicine, from clinical laboratories and pathology groups to lab industry suppliers and diagnostic technology companies. DARK Daily is part of The Dark Intelligence Group, Inc. and is dedicated to bringing useful business and management intelligence to laboratory managers, pathologists and diagnostic executives. Our recognized expertise in the strategic direction of laboratory medicine and the management of laboratories is available through DARK Daily, The Dark Report, free White Papers, Lab Resource Directory, the Executive War College on Laboratory and Pathology Management, Lab Quality Confab, and strategic consulting services.

Latest E-Briefings

Samsung’s New All-in-One Bio-Processor Chip Launches Amid Controversy Among Physicians and Medical Laboratory Professionals over the True Value of Wearable Health-monitoring Devices

Samsung is introducing a new, wearable, all-in-one chip for monitoring and processing health data that has the potential to test for common medical laboratory test biomarkers

Leading the drive to create wearable diagnostic devices are companies manufacturing products designed to serve the markets for consumer fitness and consumer wellness. Now a major electronics company says it has a new chip that will redefine how consumers and patients use wearable monitoring and diagnostic devices.

Samsung Electronics has already begun production of this new chip. Its Bio-Processor chip is different from the chips contained in other wearable devices currently on the market in that it is an “all-in-one” chip that could alter how wearable technology functions. Therefore, this new product has the potential to do some diagnostic testing that is currently performed in medical laboratories.

Currently, most wearable devices marketed to consumers for improving health and fitness measure steps and heart rate. The new chip from Samsung is claimed to be capable of considerably more.

A Single Chip for Generating Copious Amounts of Big Data continue reading

Researchers at University of Rhode Island Unveil Lab-on-Paper Test Capable of Multireagent Diagnostics: Could Enable ‘Diagnostics Without the Lab’ say Developers

New diagnostic capabilities could enable clinical laboratories to obtain multiple outcomes on single fluidic strip tests

Researchers at the University of Rhode Island (URI) have developed a paper-based microfluidic valve technology that some claim may revolutionize existing lateral-flow tests. There is the potential for this innovation to eventually enable pathology groups and medical laboratories to conduct a wide variety of complex medical diagnostics on single fluidic test strips, such as those used to diagnose pregnancy and strep throat, according to a university statement.

Testing Multiple Biomarkers Using a Single Test Strip

Fluidic test strips commonly in use today are generally capable of rendering only one result. However, by combining their new paper-based valve platform with standards strip tests, the URI research team has produced strip tests capable of answering more challenging medical questions.

The evolution of the new technology, dubbed “Lab-on-Paper,” follows the development of the team’s earlier “lab-on-a-chip” device, which the researchers began developing back in 2005. continue reading

Cleveland Clinic Gives Patients Statewide 24/7 Access to Physicians through Smartphones, iPads, Tablets and Online: Will Telemedicine Also Involve Pathologists?

New service allows patients statewide to access urgent care via telephones and other devices as Cleveland Clinic positions itself to be a 24/7 provider of choice

Urgent care by telephone is the latest patient-centric and customer-friendly medical service to be offered by the Cleveland Clinic. It is also the first 24-hour online statewide healthcare service of its kind in Ohio, a milestone that has implications for pathologists and clinical laboratory executives because lab testing is often required in support of patients wanting access to urgent care, particularly after hours.

Express Care Online (formerly MyCare Online) is the Cleveland Clinic’s new telemedicine service. It enables patients to see a medical professional for urgent matters via computer or smartphone 24 hours a day/seven days a week, according to a Cleveland Clinic statement. continue reading

New Medical Laboratory Test from Washington University School of Medicine Could One Day Replace the Popular PCR Assays Used by Many Pathologists

Called ‘ViroCap,’ this new diagnostic technology is able to discover more viruses in patient samples, as compared to PCR genome sequencing tests

It could be the ultimate multi-analysis medical laboratory test ever. Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have developed a diagnostic test that they claim tests for any virus infecting people and animals.

The new test, called ViroCap, detects viruses that standard tests based on genome sequencing cannot, according to a university statement.

Viruses Make for a Popular Research Subject

Are virus tests going, well, viral? It was just a few weeks ago that Dark Daily reported on research at Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) aimed at unlocking virus detection beyond one pathogen at a time. (See Dark Daily, “Researchers at Howard Hughes Medical Institute Develop Blood Test That Reveals a Patient’s Viral History; Could Reduce Unnecessary Clinical Laboratory Testing,” December, 30, 2015.)

The HHMI research resulted in VirScan, an alternative to medical laboratory tests that test for specific viruses one at a time, and which can detect all diseases a patient has had over his or her lifetime, according to an HHMI news statement about the new technology. continue reading

More Companies Pay for Employees to Have Genetic Tests in a Trend That Brings More Lab Test Volume to Medical Laboratories

As tests explore genetic markers related to excessive weight gain, and breast and ovarian cancer, companies as well as employees are seeing returns on investment and participation

In a development that is auspicious for medical laboratories, more genetic tests are making their way into more corporate health benefit plans. Big brands—from Aetna to Visa—are partnering with personalized health companies and clinical lab companies doing genetic testing as they support tests to help employees head-off health risks.

Employers’ sponsorship of genetic testing is a trend that could become more common, noted Fortune. But human resources and benefits experts say the offerings are still uncommon. There are also unresolved issues, such as when genetic test results are inconclusive or questionable.

For medical laboratories, the companies’ genetic testing benefits could prompt more test orders from healthcare consumers. Based on the results of their genetic tests, people might decide to make lifestyle changes, work toward prevention of chronic conditions, and take further tests to assess progress. continue reading

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