Good news on the anti-bug front
Posted by Charles II on October 10, 2013
This news is a little old, but I hadn’t heard it. David Heitz, Healthline:
A blood test developed by researchers at Duke University can predict with tremendous accuracy whether someone with, say, pneumonia has a viral or bacterial infection, even if it’s a previously unknown strain.
The test, described today in the journal Science Translational Medicine, could someday help stop the unnecessary prescribing of antibiotics to patients who have viral infections.
In the most recent experiment, 102 subjects with viral and bacterial infections, as well as healthy control patients, arrived at a hospital emergency room and were given the blood test. With about 90 percent accuracy, the test returned the proper diagnosis in just 12 hours.
In larger studies set to begin as early as this flu season, scientists will look at ways of paring down the number of genes the test analyzes and reducing the test’s turnaround time to as little as one hour.
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