AANS Neurosurgeon | Volume 26, Number 1, 2017

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Pilot Study Successfully Uses DNA Sequencing to Diagnose Brain Infections

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With more than 50 percent of inflammatory brain disorders and infections going undiagnosed, researchers at Johns Hopkins investigated their ability to either diagnose or rule out suspected brain infections using so called next-generation genetic sequencing of brain tissue samples. Using computers, they were able to rapidly analyze huge amounts of genetic and biological information to assign a diagnosis while also saving some money. “By incorporating modern genetic sequencing techniques into pathology diagnostics, we were able to investigate the potential presence of infection in 10 subjects and found appropriate explanations of clinical problems in eight out of 10 patient cases examined in this study,” says Carlos Pardo-Villamizar, MD, associate professor of neurology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “We hope to develop this technique further as a way to bring the diagnosis rate of inflammatory brain disorders and infections closer to 100 percent so we can treat patients more effectively.” To read more, click here.

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