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Subspecialties Microbiology and immunology, Oncology, Biochemistry and molecular biology, Screening and monitoring

Pathology: What’s in the News?

Handheld Healthcare

To date, the development of point-of-care biomarker devices has been hindered by technological issues, including device sensitivity and sample contamination. Now, a South Korean team has developed a biosensor capable of generating nanostructured and nanoporous surfaces with unprecedented sensitivity and contamination resistance (1).

The Fire in Your Skin

Lupus is known to cause overactive immune response in patients, but the butterfly-shaped rashes that manifest across patients’ bodies are not fully understood. A new study uses single-cell RNA sequencing analysis to show how otherwise healthy-looking skin in lupus patients predisposes them to flares and rashes (2).

Blubbering for Biomarkers

Because of tear fluid’s high concentration of proteins, it offers an ideal opportunity for biomarker hunting. The fluid’s small sample volume (and the proteins’ wide dynamic range) present tough challenges – but now, researchers have developed a new in-strip approach to protein digestion and mass spectrometric analysis that significantly increases biomarker identification capabilities (3).

Embr-eye-onic Testing

The UK’s National Genomic Test Directory has added 15 new tests and amendments to its menu, including new genetic testing for acute myeloid leukemia, solid tumors, and rare diseases. Included in the update is a new prenatal test for RB1 gene mutations known to cause retinoblastoma, an eye cancer that is often hereditary and can be difficult to diagnose early. (4).

Biomarkers, Bloody Biomarkers

Research into blood neurofilament light (NfL) across a range of frontotemporal dementia syndromes and presymptomatic mutation carriers indicates that NfL elevation before phenoconversion is associated with disease severity. Nfl could potentially be used as an early diagnostic and prognostic tool (5).

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  1. J Sabaté del Río et al., Adv Mater, June, 24, e2200981 (2022). PMID: 35429065.
  2. A Billi et al., Sci Transl Med, 14, eabn2263 (2022). PMID: 35476593.
  3. G Jones et al., Int  J  Mol Sci, 23, 2307 (2022). PMID: 35216421.
  4. Medscape UK (2022). Available at: https://bit.ly/3ufH3yp.
  5. T Gendron et al., Cell Rep Med, 19, 4 (2022). PMID: 35492244.
About the Author
George Lee

Associate Editor, The Pathologist

Like most people, I didn’t know exactly what I wanted to do after university. But one thing was certain – writing would play a central role. Not one to walk the path most traveled, I decided to spend my next few years freelancing to hone my skills as a writer and further cement my love for language. Reaching people through writing is important to me and I look forward to connecting with thousands of people through Texere’s passionate audience.

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