Researchers from the Arizona State University Biodesign Institute in the US have developed a new blood testing method to accelerate the time taken for disease detection.

By looking at hundreds of disease markers and assessing thousands of samples simultaneously, the new Multiplexed In-Solution Protein Array (MISPA) platform can deliver most results in 24 hours.

MISPA has been subject to testing in two sets of sampling experiments across the ASU community by scientists.

When compared with conventional methods, the platform exhibits improved versatility, stability, and testing capacity, and its accuracy is on same the level with or better than that of current commercial tests.

Its scalability and adaptability make it ideal for a wide range of uses, including monitoring infectious disease outbreaks.

MISPA, in a new proof-of-concept study, successfully identified responses to 99 viruses and 39 types of bacteria in more than 2,400 people.

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Biodesign Institute executive director Joshua LaBaer said: “There are a number of medical scenarios where doctors need to test for multiple possible disease exposures to deliver the best care.

“One example would be pregnancy. Currently, this requires drawing multiple tubes of blood and conducting many separate tests. So we were looking to create a reliable and reproducible test that could evaluate all those exposures at once and only require a drop of blood. This technology will allow us to get there.” 

Furthermore, the technology is expected to help researchers design new vaccines by identifying antigens that are involved in the immune response to disease.

It also holds the potential to reshape diagnostic testing in the clinical setting, as well as in public health surveillance.

Biodesign Center for Personalized Diagnostics assistant research professor and first author of the new study Lusheng Song said: “MISPA allows us to investigate the immune response in blood against up to 200 antigens across thousands of individuals (~2,000).

“The depth of the profiling of 200 antibodies simultaneously across multiple bacteria and viruses provides us with a detailed understanding of individual immune status for common pathogens of interest.”