Welcome to the Lab Report, a monthly news briefing designed to highlight recent news in the clinical laboratory industry. As champions for clinical labs, we want to spread news about the great work being done in healthcare facilities and clinical settings throughout the United States.
Check back often to find out about award winners, staff and manager promotions, facility expansions, policy and regulatory updates, association news and more. We hope you will share this content with your fellow MLPs, managers and friends.
To help us continue to spread news about the lab, keep our team updated by emailing press releases, photos and short articles to us using the Contact Us tools on this site.
Hand-held Nanopore Technology Sequences Multiple Human Genomes
Oxford University’s Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics (WTCHG) and the leading genome analytics company Genomics PLC recently announced the first sequencing and analysis of multiple human genomes using nanopore technology. This raises the possibility of a major change to both the economics and the science of DNA sequencing. While nanopore sequencing has been available for two years, it has previously only been practicable to apply it to relatively small genomes or regions of DNA, such as the much smaller genomes of viruses and bacteria. Recent upgrades to the technology have now made it possible for researchers to conduct larger-scale studies.
A key strength of nanopore sequencing is that reads can be much longer than is possible with other scalable sequencing technologies. Longer reads offer significant advantages in human genome sequencing, enabling researchers to obtain good sequence data from certain biologically important regions of the genome that are difficult to study using existing sequencing technologies.
Beckman Coulter Launches Annual CARES Award
Beckman Coulter Life Sciences recently launched an international HIV/AIDS award at the 2016 conference for the African Society for Laboratory Medicine (ASLM) held in Cape Town, South Africa. The annual award will be part of the company’s global CARES Initiative dedicated to helping people who are living with HIV/AIDS.
The CARES award is designed to recognize individuals who have shown “care, dedication and commitment” in their communities as part of the fight against HIV/AIDS. Potential winners have come from all healthcare backgrounds—nurses, healthcare workers, national coordinators, lab scientists and even clinicians—as well as lay people who are active in community outreach, including social workers.
Give Back 365 Offers Resources for Laboratory Professionals
A new community initiative and website sponsored by COLA, called “Give Back 365,” aims to build public awareness and support of laboratory medicine by encouraging industry partners to “Give Back” and help to enrich the lives of current and future laboratory professionals all year round. The program provides resources to current and future laboratory professionals while encouraging industry partners—laboratories of all sizes, educational institutions, regulatory agencies, membership organizations and manufacturers—to get involved
The foundation of GB365 is based on four key components: Student Enrichment, Scholarships, Student Mentoring, and Disaster Relief Resources. The program provides resources for any organization interested in exciting students of all ages about the field of laboratory medicine and connects students considering or currently pursuing a MLT or MLS degree with professionals in the industry that can help answer their career questions.
IDT Sustainability Award Supports Biodiversity Research for Second Year
Integrated DNA Technologies (IDT), the world leader in custom oligonucleotide synthesis, recently announced the winners of its 2016 Sustainability Award contest. This award recognizes innovative research that has the potential to make a global impact in the area of biodiversity. This year’s winning projects highlight the importance of sustaining biodiversity in groundwater, seed banks and the microbiome of birds.
Earning the top prize of $14,000 in IDT product credit is a team led by Matthew Niemiller, PhD, associate ecologist, from the Illinois Natural History Survey (INHS), Prairie Research Institute at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. Receiving $10,000 in product credit from IDT is Patrick Brown, PhD, associate professor, department of crop sciences at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. Finally, receiving $6,000 in product credit from IDT is a team from the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, Illinois, led by Shannon Hackett, PhD, associate curator.
Thought Leader Award Presented to Rohit Bhargava
Agilent Technologies Inc. recently announced that Rohit Bhargava, PhD, has received a Thought Leader Award in recognition of his pioneering work in the development of infrared spectroscopic imaging and its application to life sciences research. Bhargava is a founding professor of bioengineering at the University of Illinois Cancer Center, with laboratories also at the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology. He is also the founder and director of the Cancer Community at Illinois program, soon to be renamed the Illinois Cancer Center.
His work in the advancement of novel chemical-imaging technologies includes developing infrared spectroscopy modalities and demonstrating how they apply to cancer detection, diagnosis and prognosis. The Agilent Thought Leader Award, which includes funding and technology from Agilent, will enable Dr. Bhargava to develop new applications and software to facilitate infrared analysis of histological samples—particularly for cancer detection and diagnosis.
WilMarc Medical Adresses Call to Abolish Toxic Chemicals in Devices
DEHP and other Phthalates, also known as plasticizers, are commonly found in flexible tubing and other medical products. Studies show these compounds produce a range of toxic effects and health problems, while the chemicals released during production and incineration of PVC raise serious environmental concerns. As regulatory agencies, hospitals and medical facilities acknowledge the potential harm, they are forming initiatives and joining coalitions to abolish use of these chemicals, and protect patients, health care workers and the environment from exposure.
In support of this call for reform, WilMarc Medical installed state-of- the-art automated equipment for tubing extrusion in their newest Fort Collins plant, and spent the last two years improving product design and composition.