eCLIN: Clinical Electrochemical Diagnostics

Background

The rapid detection of prognostic and predictive biomarkers as well as diagnostic biomarkers has many benefits. These include early intervention of therapy, reduction in mortality and morbidity and freeing much needed economic resources within healthcare. In addition, the ability to sensitively and selectively identify predictive biomarkers is essential in developing more effective personalised treatment strategies.

Current diagnostic methods are subjective and suffer from intra-observer variability or focus upon the analysis of a single biomarker. Single biomarkers have been shown to be elusive on further investigation and as diseases are commonly heterogeneous a panel of markers or fingerprint of the sample will provide significantly more diagnostic information.

Electrochemical techniques are excellent methods for the analysis of a wide range of materials. They are non-destructive, rapid, cost-effective, and simple to operate. They provide a unique capability for multiple biomarker recognition. A multiplexed approach has the capacity to detect specific biomarkers as well as specific genetic sequences. In bacterial infections, these genetic sequences can be utilised as predictive markers identifying which drugs the bacteria is resistant to, thereby allowing more effective treatment.

A rapid, portable, efficient and easy to use blood test for primary and secondary care would revolutionise medical diagnostics and treatment interventions.

Technology

Researchers at Strathclyde are establishing electrochemical methods for rapid, portable analysis of clinically relevant biomarkers within serum and whole blood. This would allow for same day diagnosis of a wide range of diseases, with the first application to cardiac disease.

The method has high specificity and sensitivity; can be targeted to particularly markers for prognosis, predictive as well as diagnosis. There is also significant potential in disease and treatment monitoring and wider screening for predictive indicators.

Key benefits

  • same-day detection from simple blood samples
  • early diagnosis of patients for improved treatment outcomes
  • ability to apply to wider screening of patients before symptoms become evident
  • significant cost savings
  • minimal sample preparation
  • microarray opportunities for multiplexed diagnosis

Markets & applications

  • primary and secondary care clinicians worldwide
  • hospital and commercial clinical laboratories
  • expansion of this method to other diseases and environmental monitoring
  • potential as a point of care diagnostic to complement current systems

Licensing & development

We're seeking partners for development. Please contact Debbie Stack (debbie.stack@strath.ac.uk) for further information.