Determining the blood type of a patient or donor sample is a routine medical test that is often unavailable to health care workers in developing countries. But a cost-effective paper "dipstick" test that quickly identifies blood type may solve that problem, according to a paper published yesterday in Analytical Chemistry.
Developed by a team of Australian researchers, the test utilizes paper strips impregnated with antibodies to the antigens on red blood cells. According to a release:
In lab tests using blood samples from human volunteers, the scientists showed that a drop of blood placed on the strip caused a color change that indicated blood type. The results were as accurate as conventional blood typing.
In the paper, researchers note the test is biocompatible, biodegradable and estimate it would cost a few pennies to manufacture.
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