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Inexpensive sickle cell diagnostic tool shows perfect accuracy in Uganda

An inexpensive, easy-to-use diagnostic tool for sickle cell disease showed 100% accuracy among a large cohort of children from Uganda, according to findings presented during the late-breaking abstract session of ASH Annual Meeting and Exposition.

The test — HemoTypeSC (Silver Lake Research Corporation) — only requires a drop of blood and produces results in about 10 minutes.

Diagnosis, prophylaxis, counseling and treatment have dramatically reduced sickle cell disease incidence and mortality in the developing world, but screening for the disease has not been widely implemented in those regions, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa, according to Erik Serrao, PhD, director of business and product development at Silver Lake Research Corp.

“Although this disease is acknowledged as a public health problem by the U.N. and WHO, African governments and ministries of health still largely neglect this disease,” he said during a press conference. “Individuals with this disease are commonly identified only after they die or when they present at the hospital with life-threatening symptoms.”


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