|Interviews with Sam Sia and John Connor - Point of Care Diagnostics 2015|
16 Mar 2015
SELECTBIO point of care diagnostics conference 2015 preview
The SELECTBIO point of care diagnostics conference is only a few days away. In preparation for this I caught up with 2 of the fantastic speakers lined up. John H. Connor (JC) is an associate professor of microbiology at Boston University and a virologist by training. He spends his time identifying novel viral molecules and trying to improve current viral diagnostics. Samuel Sia (SS) is an associate professor of biomedical engineering at Columbia University, and his focus is on the use of microfluidics for global health diagnostics and for 3D tissue biology. T
So what is it that you do?
SS: Our goal is to miniaturize complex lab-based blood tests into a format available to everyone - at the upcoming conference i’ll be talking about our work on smartphone-based blood tests
JC: My talk with is on an interdisciplinary viral diagnostic project, thats I’ve been collaborating with Selim Ünlü with from the BU engineering department. We want to make diagnostics both better and easier! We are using reflective light to identify and classify viruses, lassa, Ebola and others with multiple tests
Why are point of care diagnostics so important?
SS: In a global health setting, healthcare workers can go to remote areas to diagnose and treat patients. In Europe and U.S., these tests can fundamentally transform the healthcare system by enpowering patients and consumers to monitor their own health.
JC: There is a major deficiency of portable accurate point of care diagnostic testing devices. We want to build a tool that is mobile, simple, quick and can be used by anyone.
This is bringing together a lot of developments, and we are seeing a high level of sensitivity as well as data collection, sending data to researching epidemiologists in real time. This data can allow epidemiologists to notice patterns begin to emerge, and quickly respond to major health crisis'.
Have you been to a SELECTBIO event before?
SS: I've spoken at SelectBio conferences in the past and have enjoyed the meetings.
JC: I've never been to a SELECTBIO event before, but I'm excited to come along. The international perspective, and the opportunity to interact with my European colleagues will be a great resource to help address the challenges we all have. It might be meeting resources in limited settings, how people approach the technology, and how to develop a technology that is robust and capable of meeting our needs.
SS: I am particularly looking forwards to meeting new people with new ideas.
This is the 3rd annual Point of Care Diagnostics conference, and it will be co-located with Biodetection & Biosensors, Microarray Technology and Lab-on-a-Chip. Registered delegates will have unrestricted access to all co-located meetings ensuring a comprehensive learning and sharing experience as well as being financially beneficial for attendees.
Be sure to keep up with the goings on at the conference with the #POCD2015 hashtag!
Posted By: Charlie Haynes