Diagnosing infection with cutting-edge technology

New high-performance PCR platform technology "weighs" the DNA of an infection in order to provide a speedy – and sometimes life-saving - diagnosis. We’re funding a project to guide how it can best be used.

We’re dedicated to

Introducing new and cost effective technologies that can diagnose infection more accurately and quickly.

The difference we’re making

  • Funding research to measure and assess how  this new technology can best be used to benefit patients in a hospital setting
  • Reducing use of antibiotics in patients who won't be responsive to them - both reducing the risk of antibiotic resistance and waste of valuable resources 
  • Supporting established national leaders in their field - like Barts Health’s Dr Mark Wilks - in service enhancement projects that aim to translate cutting-edge science into standard care for patients
See how you can make a difference too

What the hospital staff are saying

“There has been no technology like this before, so we have no framework upon which to base our understanding of the results. Barts Charity’s funding is helping to create that framework and is bringing the wider use of this exciting diagnostic tool that much closer.”

Dr Mark Wilks – Clinical Scientist, Barts Health NHS Trust’s Microbiology Department

Funding extraordinary healthcare

This diagnostic method has already successfully helped patients from a one year old baby to a 67-year-old man whose infections were proving life-threatening but hard to identify.

By giving patients the correct treatment sooner, the aim is that the length of antibiotic courses can be reduced, and that a patient’s stay in hospital can be shortened. The risks of complications from prolonged antibiotic use are also lessened.

In a recent case, a 46 year old man was admitted with severe chest pain, fever and other symptoms. Traditional culture tests were done and he was given antibiotics whilst he awaited the results.

Six days later - still with no diagnosis - the patient’s condition was getting worse so this testing was requested. The results came back the same day, confirming that the patient had tuberculosis and treatment was commenced right away. The patient’s initial culture tests took 16 days to confirm the tuberculosis diagnosis - a delay which could have had serious health implications for the patient.

You can contribute to extraordinary projects like this

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