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Advanced Technology Labs now under one roof at Spectrum Health

Posted at 11:29 AM, Nov 14, 2016

Three labs that started decades ago in separate settings across Grand Rapids are now under one roof at Advanced Technology Labs.

They have flow cytometry which is the study of the proteins on the surface of the cell. They look at the white blood cells and what's on the outside of them and it helps diagnose Leukemias and Lymphomas.

Then there's cytogenetics, where they go into the cell and pull out the chromosomes and look at them using a variety of technologies. They make sure all the chromosomes are there, that they're normal and if there's anything wrong with them, they determine exactly what is wrong with them.

Finally in molecular diagnostics, they go into the chromosome and pull out the DNA and RNA and perform testing on them from the patient and the tumors.

Molecular diagnostics does a wide variety of testing. Along with cancer studios, they do a lot of infectious disease testing for diseases like HPV.

They also do Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C viral testing. It's very important when someone's been diagnosed with HEP C to keep track of the amount of virus in the blood to determine if treatment is working.

The lab can determine what type of Hepatitis C the patient has because each genotype has its own distinct treatments. They're also able to do testing that is hereditary in nature, like cystic fibrosis and Huntington's disease.

Testing on virtually any specimen through next generation sequencing, it allows the patient to go directly to the best drug to treat it.

For more information on the Advanced Technology Laboratories, check out SpectrumHealth.org