Stanford Medicine creates Theranos-like test using single drop of blood

Researchers at Palo Alto, Calif.-based Stanford Medicine have developed a Theranos-like test that screens for health measures using a single drop of blood.

The approach, relayed in a Jan. 19 study in Nature Biomedical Engineering, combines a finger-prick device with multiomics technologies that assess a variety of proteins, fats, metabolism byproducts, and inflammatory markers.

"Even more importantly, we've shown you can collect the blood drop at home and mail it into the lab," said Michael Snyder, PhD, director of the Stanford Center for Genomics and Personalized Medicine and senior author of the study, in a Jan. 19 university news release.

While not naming Theranos, which famously claimed to have revolutionized blood testing before its leaders were convicted of fraud, the release noted that the "research sounds similar to a well-known approach promoted in the past for testing a single drop of blood." However, this technique employs mass spectrometry molecule-sorting technology rather than replicating existing diagnostic tests, and the data analysis is done in a lab instead of a portable box.

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