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RNA Blood Test to Detect Fibromyalgia Introduced

IQuity releases diagnostic for the chronic musculoskeletal pain syndrome

A PPM Brief

Nashville-based data science company IQuity has unveiled a groundbreaking new blood test that uses RNA analysis to help practitioners detect fibromyalgia in patients with 94% accuracy, according to a company release.1 Called IsolateFibromyalgia, the test results can be delivered back to the healthcare practitioner within one week, reducing the months or sometimes years it may normally take to diagnose the disease.

“Living with the pain of fibromyalgia is often compounded with confusion and uncertainty when patients don’t know the cause of their illness,” said Chase Spurlock, PhD, chief executive officer of IQuity, in a press release. “IsolateFibromyalgia provides useful information that improves the efficiency of the diagnostic process for doctors.”

Developers used extensive disease controls to create an RNA blood test that detects the gene expression pattern consistent with fibromyalgia; RNA being a measure of what is going on in a person’s body at the present time. The IsolateFibromyalgia test reportedly provides a highly accurate diagnosis that differentiates fibromyalgia from conditions that it mimics or conditions that would be misdiagnosed as fibromyalgia, such as rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, Lyme disease, and lupus. The research teams examined approximately 600 samples from patients suffering from a number of these conditions, along with healthy patients.1

The test was developed using the company’s IQIsolate technology, which applies machine-learning methods to create algorithms that compares the RNA profile from patient blood samples against a robust data set of healthy and sick patients identified through the company’s research. This proprietary technology also birthed similar blood tests such as IsolateMS for multiple sclerosis and IsolateIBS-IBD for both irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).1

“RNA analysis is a cutting-edge tool for doctors that has great potential in the field of medical diagnostics,” said Dr. Spurlock in the release. “RNA shows what’s taking place right now in a patient’s cells. That information can speed up the pace of diagnosis for physicians, leading to faster, more effective treatment.”

This test from IQuity is similar in nature to the test FM/a (EpicGenetics, Los Angeles, CA). FM/a  is a laboratory-developed test that fulfills the FDA regulation for a serum immunological test system.2

According to an IQuity representative, FDA has no jurisdiction over similar, lab-developed tests like FM/a and IsolateFibromyalgia. All laboratory testing is regulated by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) under the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA). IsolateFibromyalgia follows stringent criteria.

Healthcare providers who suspect fibromyalgia in patients may learn more about the test at IQuityLabs.com.

Last updated on: March 21, 2018
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