Abbott forms multidisciplinary alliance to trial blood test for concussions

2 May 2019 (Last Updated May 7th, 2019 15:47)

Abbott has partnered with the US Department of Defense (DoD) and the Transforming Research and Clinical Knowledge in Traumatic Brain Injury (TRACK-TBI) Network for a clinical trial to assess its blood test technology for concussions.

Abbott forms multidisciplinary alliance to trial blood test for concussions
The point-of-care blood test is being developed to facilitate evaluation of brain injuries within minutes. Credit: Alden Chadwick.

Abbott has partnered with the US Department of Defense (DoD) and the Transforming Research and Clinical Knowledge in Traumatic Brain Injury (TRACK-TBI) Network for a clinical trial to assess its blood test technology for concussions.

The point-of-care test is being developed to facilitate evaluation of brain injuries within minutes. It is designed to measure the GFAP and UCH-L1 proteins released into the blood stream when the brain is injured.

As part of the new trial, the partners will analyse findings from patients visiting certain trauma centres across the US.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) cleared a blood test to identify brain injury within 12 hours of injury.

“Having a portable biomarker technology will give clinicians an objective measure of a soldier’s brain injury in a matter of minutes and could potentially impact the care they receive when they are evaluated and treated.”

Abbott’s research is intended to assess individuals with suspected TBI within 24 hours of injury. Blood test results from these people will be compared with standard clinical assessments, computerised tomography (CT) scans, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans and clinical outcomes.

The concussion assessment test is being devised for the next generation i-STAT Alinity system that is used by the military and hospitals to run common blood tests at point-of-care using just two to three drops of blood.

Abbott Diagnostics medical director Beth McQuiston said: “Developing a blood test for the brain takes robust, proven data and collaboration among the best minds in academia, industry and the public service sectors.

“This type of blood test could give clinicians more real-time, objective information about what’s happening to the brain, so they can make timely, accurate decisions right at the point of care.”

Over the past two decades, more than 380,000 military members have sustained TBIs. The DoD teamed up with Abbott in 2014 to create a portable blood test for assessing concussions at bedside.

US Army Medical Materiel Development Activity Neurotrauma and Psychological Health Project Management Office project manager Krista Caudle said: “Having a portable biomarker technology will give clinicians an objective measure of a soldier’s brain injury in a matter of minutes and could potentially impact the care they receive when they are evaluated and treated.”