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New Blood Testing Technology Monitors Infections

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New blood-checking technology that promises to strengthen healthcare cures for cancer sufferers, post-operative care and reveals the health of babies within the womb is being developed by Lancaster researchers.

A portable bedside blood diagnostics device is the focus of a collaborative study assignment involving Lancaster-headquartered corporation eBiogen Limited, clinicians from Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust, and academics from Lancaster University’s Chemistry Department and Faculty of Health and Medicine.

This new small-scale technology, called ‘EBio-LacSens’, would swiftly measure blood traits to monitor for sepsis or toxins. It might be a just right indicator of the success of remedies following operations and it might lead to the early detection of sepsis in chemotherapy sufferers. In addition it could support evaluation of the status of foetuses.

The device does this by taking pinprick samples of blood and delivering fast chemical evaluation in less than a minute. This quick processing of samples, in comparison with the normal method where samples that must be despatched for evaluation at hospital laboratories (a procedure that may take hours), makes it possible for medical staff to quickly adjust remedies in line with the improved data.

Michael Mumford, from eBiogen, remarked,This project passed its feasibility stage and it is now progressing well in its prototype stage with encouraging results. We are starting the human blood testing soon before proceeding to market. Lancaster University has enabled us to develop a rich and supportive expert network. Through bringing blood diagnostics closer to the sufferer there are further benefits of decreased hazard of illness and price savings.

Dr Mukesh Kumar, the Project Research Fellow, stated,” Although the existing point-of-care testing kits have resolved a few conventional problems, they have not had a great impact in most clinical testing. The new technology would circumvent many current problems through miniaturization, enabling an economical, portable analyser to be used ‘by the bedside’. The prospect of being able to significantly reduce the time between taking a sample and the delivery of the analysis is exciting and rewarding.

The point-of-care market has been estimated at $38B (£28.7B) in 2017. This $38B represents sixteen per cent of the entire in-vitro diagnostic (IVD) market.

Professor Peter Fielden, Head of Chemistry at Lancaster institution, stated: ” Working with eBiogen has given us a great opportunity to develop our academic ideas through technology transfer into real devices that will have significant impact in healthcare.

An additional improvement to the technology is that it uses very small samples of blood plasma — just a few microlitres (pinprick droplets) as opposed to a few millilitres (a full vial) as required via present testing techniques. It is a significant difference when coping with young children and sufferers with fragile blood vessels.

Dr David Telford, Consultant Microbiologist at Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust further commented: “A unique feature of this new project is the close links and networks developing between academics and clinical end-users at all stages of product development from concept to marketing. This ensures that our products are useful in the modern health care environment.”

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