Listen: New gene tests for germs quickly reveal source of infections
"Well, there's a new medical breakthrough that could help treat infections, much more quickly scientists at UCSF of developed, gene tests, which can determine what specific germs are causing an infection which would allow doctors to choose more precise treatment for more. We turn to the KCBS ring central Newsline to talk with Dr Charleston leader of the study, thanks for talking to us. So would this be a gene tests that you do on the spot when somebody comes in with an infection? How would this work? No, this would be gene tests be done by a lab laboratory reference laboratory, or a hostile Vittori and the general idea is that this gene test looks takes a clinical sample. You can take spinal fluid blood respiratory. Chretien's or you're in and is able to identify any pathogens that may be present. And that's in that sample by looking for DNA looking for the genes from viruses, bacteria, fungi, and parasites. So it it's a it's a comprehensive test that potentially can can identify any pathogen that may be present that maybe causing a patient's illness. Okay. So this isn't something you're going to use when a kid comes with, with an ear infection. No, I it's primarily been used because of the cost of the test, because the test does take a few days. It's primarily a test at used in hospice patients who have mysterious infection, usually patients have already undergone initial rounds of testing, and they've been negative, but they're still sick. So we really need to have a tool that can enable us to make diagnoses quickly. And in a way that we can treat the patient, accurately ineffectively place, the lot of mystery around as people who get. Bit by a tick and end up with with lime disease with this help there. Potentially of because of the power of the test lies in the fact that we can, we can pretty much detect any organism or any pathogen that causes disease? So in a patient that may be omitted or present to the hospital with a with a tick-borne or possible tick-borne infection. We could we could, for instance, look at blood from that patient and be able to identify whether or not there's evidence of infection from, from from pathogenic organism that's causing the onus. Okay. So does this take a long time? I mean, I always thought that gene tests took a bit of time. It does it currently does take a about two to three days for us to get a result. This is this is being run in a Clinical Lab. But and that's also why we, we have been using this primarily for patients who are acutely ill and in the hospital as a way to make a diagnosis in time so that we can treat them and then get them out of the hospital. However, we are developing, and several groups are developing new technologies where presumably we could actually have this test done in a few hours. So it potentially does have the potential of being done very rapidly. Although currently, it, it takes a few days to run the tests. Exciting stuff. Thanks for talking to a stock to Charles chew leader of this study at"