Retail Giant Nordstrom Now Sells Viome Life Sciences’ Microbiome Testing Kit Online, Will Stock the Test Kit in Some Retail Locations Next Year

Although there are healthcare providers who see the potential in microbiome testing, many clinical laboratories are not yet ready to embrace microbiome-based testing In an unlikely string of events, no less than Nordstrom, the national department store chain, announced in September that it would offer microbiome-based test claimed to “check gut health.” Apparently, its customers were interested in this clinical laboratory test, as the Nordstrom website currently indicates that the “Health...

Spatial Transcriptomics Provide a New and Innovative Way to Analyze Tissue Biology, May Have Value in Surgical Pathology

Newly combined digital pathology, artificial intelligence (AI), and omics technologies are providing anatomic pathologists and medical laboratory scientists with powerful diagnostic tools Add “spatial transcriptomics” to the growing list of “omics” that have the potential to deliver biomarkers which can be used for earlier and more accurate diagnoses of diseases and health conditions. As with other types of omics, spatial transcriptomics might be a new tool for surgical pathologists once...

Penn Medicine Researchers Develop Fast, Accurate, Inexpensive COVID-19 Diagnostic Test Based on Electrochemical Technology

The rapid diagnostic test costs less than $5 per unit and can be adapted for other diseases, the developers say, which opens a slew of possibilities for clinical laboratories Just as the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus spurred deployment of new vaccine technology based on messenger RNA (mRNA), the COVID-19 pandemic also could prove to be a watershed for in vitro diagnostics (IVD) innovation in ways that benefit clinical laboratories. In one notable example, researchers at the Perelman School of...

COVID-19 Pandemic Tied to Historically Low Influenza Cases, Leading to Uncertainty about Next Winter’s Flu Vaccine

Clinical laboratories may see increase in flu and COVID-19 specimen processing as people return to pre-pandemic social behaviors, experts predict While SARS-CoV-2 infections continue to ravage many parts of the world, influenza (flu) cases in North America have hit a historic low. As winter approached last year, infectious disease experts warned of a “twindemic” in which the COVID-19 outbreak would combine with seasonal influenza to overwhelm the healthcare system. But this did not happen, and...

Precision Medicine Requires Targeted Cancer Therapies, but Payers Reluctant to Pay for Some Genetic Testing Needed to Match a Patient with Right Drug

Clinical labs and pathology groups know how advances in targeted therapies and genomics far outpace providers’ and patients’ ability to know how best to use and pay for them. One fascinating development on the road to precision medicine is that many new cancer drugs now in clinical trials will require a companion genetic test to identify patients with tumors that will respond to a specific therapeutic drug.

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