Most pathologists know that CRISPR can permanently repair DNA to eliminate diseases that plague families, but also could be used for less ethical purposes, say experts
Gene editing is a rapidly developing field that is expected to create new diagnostic needs that can be filled by pathologists and by new medical laboratory tests. However, experts in bio-ethics are voicing concerns that gene editing for clinical purposes is moving forward without proper consideration of important ethical issues and are calling for a moratorium on use of gene editing for clinical purposes.
What is speeding the development of gene editing is use of the tool known as CRISPR/Cas9. It is a gene-editing tool that makes it possible to genetically modify DNA for therapeutic purposes. It provides medical scientists the ability to repair damaged genes that cause or predispose individuals to disease. (more…)
This innovative technology platform is newest effort to measure biomarkers without the need for the invasive specimen collection techniques used in medical laboratory testing
Pathologists and clinical laboratory managers interested in how new technologies are transforming certain well-established clinical practices will be interested to learn about the latest research breakthroughs in pulse oximetry, a common procedure used to measure the oxygen level (or oxygen saturation) in the blood.
Pulse oximetry is considered to be a noninvasive, painless, general indicator of oxygen delivery to the peripheral tissues (such as the finger, earlobe, or nose). For decades, PO has been ubiquitous in the hospital. Now, because of recent advance, this field is poised for a paradigm shift away from simple monitoring devices to advanced products capable of connecting patients to electronic systems that continuously gather data and notify caregivers when values become critical.
A group of bioengineering doctoral students at the University of California Berkeley (UC Berkeley) have invented an inexpensive Band-Aid-style oximeter that uses red and green light to non-invasively monitor pulse rate and oxygen level in blood. While this device could revolutionize pulse oximetry monitoring in healthcare settings, the technology might also be applied to measuring other useful biomarkers as one approach to eliminate invasive specimen collection. (more…)