SAN DIEGO, May 5 /PRNewswire/ -- Biocept, an emerging leader in biotechnology, will launch I.D. Rh(D), the first in a series of noninvasive prenatal diagnostic tests that can be performed with a simple maternal blood sample, at the Annual Clinical Meeting of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, May 3-7 in New Orleans.
The I.D.Rh(D) test diagnoses the Rh(D) status of a fetus in an Rh(D) negative pregnancy, and can be performed as early as ten weeks of gestation. The test isolates fetal DNA circulating in the mother's whole blood, using Biocept's proprietary I.D. (Isolating Fetal DNA) platform technology (U.S. patents pending). The fetal DNA is analyzed in Biocept's CLIA-accredited clinical laboratory to determine Rh(D) genotype. Similar noninvasive tests have been available routinely in some countries outside the US.
Each year, approximately 460,000 Rh(D) negative women in the United States become pregnant. If their partners are Rh(D) positive, which they are in approximately 89% of cases, these women risk carrying a fetus that is also Rh(D) positive. When this occurs, the woman may develop antibodies that attack fetal red blood cells, leading to problems ranging from fetal anemia and jaundice to cerebral palsy, mental retardation, and even death.
Until now, the only tests available to definitively diagnose fetal Rh(D) genotype required invasive procedures such as amniocentesis or chorionic villus sampling (CVS), which carry their own risks to the fetus. For this reason, physicians have routinely administered anti-D immune globulin injections, a human blood product, to all Rh(D) negative women at 28-29 weeks of gestation.
"The I.D.Rh(D) test marks the beginning of a new era in definitive
noninvasive prenatal testing," said Joe Leigh Simpson, M.D., Executive
Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at Florida International University
College of Medicine. "I.D.Rh(D) offers physicians and their patients a
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved