FDA, IBM, Merck, Walmart and KPMG Collaborate on Blockchain Pilot Project to Track Pharmaceuticals

First used to track cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, blockchain is finding its way into tracking and quality control systems in healthcare, including clinical laboratories and big pharma Four companies were selected by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to participate in a pilot program that will utilize blockchain technology to create a real-time monitoring network for pharmaceutical products. The companies selected by the FDA include: IBM (NYSE:IBM), Merck (NYSE:MRK), Walmart...

Clinical Laboratory Test for Alzheimer’s Disease Gets Ever Closer to Reality

Scientists worldwide engaged in research to develop a biomarker for dementia are predicting success, though some say additional research will be needed Could a blood test for Alzheimer’s disease soon be on clinical laboratory test menus nationwide? Perhaps so. A recent Associated Press (AP) article that was picked up by NBC News and other healthcare publications reported that experimental test results presented during the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference (AAIC) in July suggest...

Artificial Intelligence Systems, Like IBM’s Watson, Continue to Underperform When Compared to Oncologists and Anatomic Pathologists

Though the field of oncology has some AI-driven tools, overall, physicians report the reality isn’t living up to the hype Artificial intelligence (AI) has been heavily touted as the next big thing in healthcare for nearly a decade. Much ink has been devoted to the belief that AI would revolutionize how doctors treat patients. That it would bring about a new age of point-of-care clinical decision support tools and clinical laboratory diagnostic tests. And it would enable remote telemedicine to...

Clinical Laboratories and Hospitals Test New Technology That Can Help Reduce Unacceptable Rates of Contaminated Blood Culture Specimens

Especially for busy hospital emergency departments, avoiding blood culture contamination is a constant challenge for those tasked with collecting blood culture specimens Better, faster diagnosis and treatment of sepsis continues to be a major goal at hospitals, health networks, and other medical facilities throughout the United States. Yet microbiologists and clinical laboratory managers continue to be frustrated with how frequently contaminated blood culture specimens show up in the...

Saarland University Researchers Use Blood Samples from Zoo Animals to Help Scientists Find Biomarkers That Speed Diagnoses in Humans

Using animal blood, the researchers hope to improve the accuracy of AI driven diagnostic technology What does a cheetah, a tortoise, and a Humboldt penguin have in common? They are zoo animals helping scientists at Saarland University in Saarbrücken, Germany, find biomarkers that can help computer-assisted diagnoses of diseases in humans at early stages. And they are not the only animals lending a paw or claw. In their initial research, the scientists used blood samples that had been collected...

University Researchers Develop Microfluidic Device That Partitions Cancer Cells According to Size in Effort to Create a Useful Liquid Biopsy Method

Could a fast, cheap, and accurate liquid biopsy diagnostic cancer test soon be available to clinical laboratories and anatomic pathology groups? What if medical laboratories worldwide could perform a simple liquid biopsy diagnostic test that detected cancer in its various forms? Such a test, if affordable and accurate, would be a boon to histopathology and clinical pathology laboratories. Until now, though, such a test has proven to be elusive. But, researchers at the University of Illinois at...