Biomolecule Test Could Bring Diagnostics to the Bedside

It scans for genes or proteins that signal disease

THURSDAY, March 8, 2007 (HealthDay News) -- An inexpensive technique to screen for millions of different biomolecules -- such as proteins, RNA and DNA -- in a single sample has been developed by Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) researchers.

This technology could lead to the development of low-cost medical diagnostic tests at patients' bedsides and could also be used for genetic profiling, disease monitoring and drug discovery, the scientists said.

A paper on the research is published in the March 9 issue of the journal Science.

This technique uses tiny customizable particles (thinner than the width of a human hair) that are each equipped with a barcoded ID and one or more probe regions that turn fluorescent when they detect specific biomolecules in a sample, the scientists explained.

They said they can custom produce a "virtually unlimited" range of particles to test for millions of different biomolecules.

More information

MedLinePlus has more about different kinds of diagnostic tests.

Robert Preidt

Robert Preidt

Published on March 08, 2007

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