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Diagnostic technology involves tests, assays and equipment that allow clinical labs to diagnose diseases. New diagnostic technologies are currently transforming both infectious disease testing and cancer testing. Rapid molecular tests, for example, make it possible for medical labs to deliver an accurate answer back to a referring physician in just hours—compared to the several days that are required for most long-standing microbiology test procedures.

Even more disruptive technologies include digital pathology and MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry. Digital pathology is an image-based information environment that is enabled by computer technology to allow for the management of information generated from a digital slide. Digital pathology is enabled in part by virtual microscopy, which is the practice of converting glass slides into digital slides that can be viewed, managed, and analyzed on a computer monitor. With the advent of Whole-Slide Imaging, the field of digital pathology has exploded and is currently regarded as one of the most promising avenues of diagnostic medicine in order to achieve even better, faster and cheaper diagnosis, prognosis and prediction of cancer and other important diseases.

MALDI-TOF (matrix assisted laser desorption ionization-time of flight) mass spectrometry allows clinical laboratories to identify small aerobic gram-positive bacilli more accurately, faster, and in a more cost-effective manner than ever. It enables the analysis of biomolecules (biopolymers such as DNA, proteins, peptides and sugars) and large organic molecules (such as polymers, dendrimers and other macromolecules), which tend to be fragile and fragment when ionized by more conventional ionization methods.

Even as pathologists are working to develop more sensitive and accurate diagnostic tests for cancer, similar efforts are underway in radiology and imaging. In fact, one research team has developed a self-assembling nanoparticle that can adhere to cancer cells, thus making them visible in MRI scans and possibly eliminate the need for invasive tissue biopsies.

Researchers have developed a self-assembling nanoparticle that targets cancer cells and makes them visible on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans. The new nanoparticle improves MRI scanning efficacy by “specifically seeking out receptors that are found in cancerous cells,” according to researchers. Were this development to become a reality, it has the potential to alter anatomic pathology’s role in diagnosing cancer.

Mass Spec Tests Struggle To Gain Insurers’ Attention

CEO SUMMARY: Since 2014, a toxicology lab at the University of Colorado has used mass spectrometry to offer low-cost, accurate multi-analyte test panels that can detect hundreds of therapeutic drugs and drugs of abuse. However, CU Toxicology’s chief medical officer says health insurers are slow to accept this diagnostic technology, despite its demonstrated clinical benefit

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Elizabeth Holmes of Theranos Speaks at AACC To Skeptical PhDs, Pathologists, and Press

CEO SUMMARY: Elizabeth Holmes, Founder and CEO of Theranos, Inc., was given the ideal platform by AACC to show the science behind her lab company’s much-touted diagnostic technologies. But in a surprise to the assembled audience, Holmes, accompanied by three PhDs on her team, chose to discuss: a) her company’s new business strategy; b) an

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Score for Theranos after AACC: Fail.

This is an excerpt from a 1,600-word article in the August 15 issue of THE DARK REPORT. The complete article is available to paid members of the Dark Intelligence Group.

SKEPTICS WHO WEREN’T EXPECTING MUCH from Theranos CEO Elizabeth Holmes at the recent American Association of Clinical Chemistry’s annual meeting were proved right: Instead of delivering scientific

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Genetic Testing Lab Finds Payers Respond To Education on Test Utility

CEO SUMMARY: In recent years, insurers have raised the bar and become much tougher when making coverage and reimbursement decisions for molecular assays, genomic, and genetic tests. Yet several lab testing companies are having good success at demonstrating the validity and clinical utility of their assays. Among them is Foundation Medicine, of Cambridge, Mass. In

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AACC reveals details of its invitation to Theranos CEO

This is an excerpt from a 925-word article in the May 23 issue of THE DARK REPORT. The complete article is available to paid members of the Dark Intelligence Group. 
CEO SUMMARY: In its latest lab industry scoop, THE DARK REPORT has reached out to American Association of Clinical Chemistry (AACC) leaders to find out how Elizabeth

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