Scientists developing a new blood test to screen for secondary heart attack

Scientists developing a new blood test that can easily detect whether a person is at a risk of a second heart attack.
Professor Peter Meikle head of metabolomics and his team from the Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute have identified Plasma lipid biomarkers (fats in the blood) that can improve factors in predicting the heart diseases.

Peter Meikle says over the next 2 -3 years this revolutionary blood test is proposed to be trialed in Australia as a part of a personalized health program which is currently under development.

“The test was developed after a study looked at 10,000 samples to find the biomarkers that will determine whether a person is at risk of having another heart attack,” said Prof Meikle.

“We hope to identify those individuals who are at greatest risk of a second heart attack so that they can be closely monitored and treated accordingly.”

“While there are thousands of lipids in the blood, our challenge is to identify which ones best predict disease outcomes.”

Till now, Prototype of this test has been trailed in America, on the basis of 2 lipid markers, the prototype only provides GP’s and patients with limited information and it is not yet available in Australia.

This Test will be a simple test like cholesterol tests the process and the costs of the test will be the same like cholesterol tests. This test could be operated out of the hospital pathology laboratories that already contain the necessary equipments.

“Our test will use up to ten lipid markers to better diagnose heart disease. It’s a challenging, yet very exciting time. We effectively have the information and are in the process of refining the technology,” said Prof Meikle.

“Once the protocols for a diagnostic heart disease blood test are in place; it will be possible to additional markers for the test to also be used in predicting diabetes and potentially Alzheimer’s disease as well.

The test will reclassify a patient’s risk of heart attack and stroke. It will better identify who within the ‘intermediate’ risk category are in fact, at higher risk, and help guide physicians in the appropriate treatment of patients.” said Prof Meikle.

Reference: Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute

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