Do you remember every virus you’ve ever battled in your life? Of course not, right?
Now a new technology developed by Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) researchers can use a single drop of a person’s blood and find out current and past infections with any known human virus. Until now, testing had to be done for specific viruses one at a time. Now, this method called VirScan, provides and efficient alternative.
Isn’t that just amazing? I had once written about a gene scan in one of my books and thought of it as only possible in a future far from now. Guess not. We are getting there fast.
The test costs about $25 per blood sample. Quite affordable as well.
To check for a particular virus, researchers check the reaction of antibodies in the patient’s blood to molecules with the virus’ molecular signature. In the past, researchers could only test a sample for reactions of one type of antibody at a time. But now, thanks to Next Generation genetic sequencing, researchers using VirScan to look for hundreds of antibody reactions at once.
It’s like a magical looking glass that can read our past. Fascinating, isn’t it?
Link to the full article, here.