Art and Science of Laboratory Medicine

Art and Science of Laboratory Medicine

Monday, October 31, 2016

World Congress of Biomedical Laboratory Science 2018

The 33rd World Congress of Biomedical Laboratory Science will be held on 22-26 September 2018, Firenze, Italy.

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IFBLS, World Congress

Source:   IFBLS

Friday, October 28, 2016

Lab Halloween Pumpkin

The rules were simple: collect a pumpkin from the cafeteria, carve it and return the carved pumpkin for a chance to win a pizza party! Sweet. I had not seen the winners either of the previous years so I was not entirely sure what we were up against. We decided to make our pumpkins work related: Heather make a DNA pumpkin and I made a microscope with some differently shaped bacteria.

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Pumpkin Carving Contest

Source: No meat no meal




All you need is microbiology

E. coli on EMB media


Photo By: Madiha Tariq from Rawalpindi, Pakistan.

Deadliest Viruses on Earth

Humans have been battling viruses since before our species had even evolved into its modern form. For some viral diseases, vaccines and antiviral drugs have allowed us to keep infections from spreading widely, and have helped sick people recover. For one disease — smallpox — we've been able to eradicate it, ridding the world of new cases.

But as the Ebola outbreak now devastating West Africa demonstrates, we're a long way from winning the fight against viruses.

The strain that is driving the current epidemic, Ebola Zaire, kills up to 90 percent of the people it infects, making it the most lethal member of the Ebola family. "It couldn't be worse," said Elke Muhlberger, an Ebola virus expert and associate professor of microbiology at Boston University.

But there are other viruses out there that are equally deadly, and some that are even deadlier. Here are the nine worst killers, based on the likelihood that a person will die if they are infected with one of them, the sheer numbers of people they have killed, and whether they represent a growing threat.


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The 9 Deadliest Viruses on Earth

Source: Live Science
Image credit: National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Our chocolate

Their chocolate vs our chocolate



Source: Facebook via medtechposts

Iron-Deficiency Anemia in Ulcerative Colitis

Many patients with ulcerative colitis don't receive recommended testing and treatment for the common problem of iron deficiency anemia, reports a study in the October issue of Inflammatory Bowel Diseases, official journal of the Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America (CCFA). The journal is published by Wolters Kluwer.

The study used nationwide data on 836 patients newly diagnosed with ulcerative colitis in the Veterans Affairs (VA) health care system from 2001 to 2011. Over a median eight years' follow-up, 70 percent of patients developed anemia: low levels of hemoglobin, which carries oxygen in the blood.

The study focused on how many of these patients were tested and treated for iron deficiency anemia—a common complication of ulcerative colitis, caused by intestinal bleeding and malnutrition. Iron deficiency anemia has profound effects on health, including declines in physical and cognitive abilities.

The results showed "inadequate monitoring and treatment of anemia and iron deficiency" among patients with ulcerative colitis. Of the patients who developed anemia, 31 percent did not undergo recommended tests for iron deficiency. Sixty-three percent of patients tested were diagnosed with iron deficiency anemia.

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Iron-Deficiency Anemia in Ulcerative Colitis—Many Patients Don't Get Testing and Treatment

Source: Wolters Kluwer

Monday, October 24, 2016

Zika Virus Infection Alters Human and Viral RNA

Researchers at University of California San Diego School of Medicine have discovered that Zika virus infection leads to modifications of both viral and human genetic material. These modifications — chemical tags known as methyl groups — influence viral replication and the human immune response. The study is published October 20 by Cell Host & Microbe.

In human cells, RNA is the genetic material that carries instructions from the DNA in a cell’s nucleus out to the cytoplasm, where molecular machinery uses those instructions to build proteins. Cells can chemically modify RNA to influence protein production. One of these modifications is the addition of methyl groups to adenosine, one of the building blocks that make up RNA. Known as N6-methyladenosine (m6A), this modification is common in humans and other organisms.

In contrast to humans, the entire genomes of some viruses, including Zika and HIV, are made up of RNA instead of DNA. These viruses hijack the host’s cellular machinery to translate its RNA to proteins. Rana and his team previously discovered that m6A plays an important role in HIV infection.

Next, Rana and team will investigate the role of RNA modifications in the viral life cycle, and how the human immune response is altered by various Zika virus strains. They are also developing small molecules to target specific RNA structures as a means to treat Zika virus infections. 

Read more:
Zika Virus Infection Alters Human and Viral RNA

Source: UCsan Diago Health

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Abnormal MCH effects to HbA1c level

Mean corpuscular hemoglobin (MCH) and mean corpuscular volume (MCV) correlated negatively with Hb A1c. Fasting glucose, MCH, and age emerged as predictors of Hb A1c in a stepwise regression that discarded sex, hemoglobin, MCV, mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration (MCHC), serum creatinine, and liver disease. Mean Hb A1c in MCH interdecile intervals fell from 6.8% (51 mmol/mol) in the lowest (≤27.5 pg) to 6.0% (43 mmol/mol) in the highest (>32.5 pg), with similar results for MCV. After adjustment for fasting glucose and other correlates of Hb A1c, a 1 pg increase in MCH reduced the odds of Hb A1c–defined dysglycemia, diabetes and poor glycemia control by 10%–14%.

For at least 25% of patients, low or high MCH or MCV levels are associated with increased risk of an erroneous Hb A1c–based identification of glycemia status. Although causality has not been demonstrated, these parameters should be taken into account in interpreting Hb A1c levels in clinical practice.

Read more:
Impact of Mean Cell Hemoglobin on Hb A1c–Defined Glycemia Status 


Source: Clinical Chemistry

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Lab Cam

iPhones take great pictures. This adapter makes it super easy to take images and make videos with your iPhone through your microscope. You can even use your iPhone to live project/stream your view. The iDu adapter fits iPhone6/6s. It's fitted with a 10x magnifying lens and comes with two adapters to fit a 30 mm or 23 mm eyepiece slot (it should fit all Nikon, Olympus, Zeiss, Leica and other common brand microscopes).

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iDu Optics LabCam Microscope Adapter for iPhone 


Source: Youtube

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