Throughout our history, Neoteryx has been fueled by an appetite for risk and discovery. Our founder Fasha Mahjoor ended a successful 35-year stint at the helm of Phenomenex to bet it all on a blood collection breakthrough. Our flagship device, the Mitra® microsampler, sprang from a key insight, a lot of determination, and the courage to transform a few resources into technology that's changing the face of healthcare. And we're proud to support other organizations that do their own vital work in the same pioneering spirit.
In November 2018, the HSX Antarctica team, led by Hampshire Scout and Outward Bound Learning Adventure Manager Joe Doherty, pulled off an unprecedented feat of exploration, becoming the first such group to ski to the South Pole and return using wind power. Neoteryx sponsored the journey, followed its progress through social media, and debriefed with Doherty upon his safe return home.
"It's a beautiful but deadly place," says Doherty of Antarctica. "It's peaceful, clean, majestic, and has some incredible phenomena. It's untouched by humans and it can't be tamed by humans. It will try and show you its best parts, but it will try and kill you at any given moment. Only fools believe it can be conquered, and they often end up with serious injuries or worse."
Among the unique physical threats Doherty discovered on the earth's most mysterious land mass, the weirdest and most perturbing was a condition known as polar thigh. "It's not a frostbite type of injury, but it is a cold injury. The problem is caused by the wind hitting your thighs in an area that is quite fatty and you can't feel easily that it is cold, compared to your hands, for example. The wind constantly hits this area and causes the skin to crack and weep. A down skirt is what I wore to combat, but it still wasn't enough, so I had this ailment from Day 10 until Day 61, and I still have scars from it now."
But the worst demon he had to fight off, says Doherty, was laziness, which can plague even the most intrepid souls among us. "Laziness stops you putting on the gloves you should have put on five minutes ago. Now you have frostbite on your fingers. Laziness stops you properly pitching your tent, and you subsequently lose it in a storm. You get the picture. Being proactive, stopping, and doing what needs to be done the first time stops you from being hurt. It not only means you survive, but you can actually perform in any challenging environment!"
Like any great challenge, Antarctica demands respect. As Doherty learned to respect it, he also grew to love and revere it. "It will make you learn who you truly are and for that, I am forever grateful."
At Neoteryx, we believe in working together with other like minds and stout hearts to solve old problems and do new things in new ways. We've allowed organ transplant patients to perform therapeutic drug monitoring on the way up Mt. Kilimanjaro. We've brought state-of-the-art blood collection methods to children in Liberia and Côte d’Ivoire. And we bring the same tenacity to projects in patient monitoring, clinical trials, health and wellness, and more.
Topics: Smarter Healthcare
The facts are in. Volumetric Absorptive Microsampling (VAMS™) technology, in the form of Mitra® microsampling devices from Neoteryx, has transformative applications in patient monitoring, clinical trials, collecting NGS-grade RNA/DNA from dried blood, and far beyond. Some of the most exciting areas in which this little device can make a big difference are so new that they are just beginning to be explored. Particularly promising is the potential work to be done in the booming field of health and wellness.
Existing case studies indicate the enormous potential for microsampling-related breakthroughs in health and wellness.
Measuring Biomarkers for Personalized Nutritional Recommendations
The science-driven Spanish startup Biomeb includes Mitra® microsampling devices from Neoteryx as part of its product called Well B. "Our Well B metabolomic tests not only allow our customers to monitor changes in their metabolisms, but also will lead to the generation of a history of their individual lifestyle responses," says Elias Daura (PhD, MBA), founder and CEO of Biomeb. As long as Well B is allowing its customers to live healthier lives, why not make their blood collection experiences easier, too? That's the magic of microsampling in health and wellness, made possible in part by a smarter sampling event.
Helping Athletes Meet Fitness Objectives and Be Their Best
When so much biological information can be attained from such small samples of biological fluid, it creates tremendous opportunities in the areas of predictive, personalized, and precision medicine. But that's not all. With the rise of the Quantified Self movement, the same tools can be extended to healthy people who want to maximize their physical potential, including athletes. Whether amateur or professional, athletes are health-conscious, competitive, and ever on the cutting edge of health and wellness innovation. With its Blueprint product, Quest Diagnostics is giving them more of the precise measurements they need and want, with a little help from a certain small-volume specimen collection device.
"Based on our 50 years of diagnostic innovation, Quest is uniquely positioned to bring new capabilities to the consumer market," said Jay Wohlgemuth, M.D., senior vice president, research and development, and chief medical officer, Quest Diagnostics. "The microsampling and concierge options complement the overall enhancements to our Blueprint for Athletes offering, empowering individuals to pursue their athletic and fitness pursuits armed with the individualized insights only state-of-the-art biometric lab testing can provide."
Lifesaving Innovation in Addiction Recovery
The United States has been ravaged by an ongoing opioid epidemic. Mitigating the harm and providing new hope to those in recovery, and those who depend on them, requires courage, tenacity, intelligence, and truly groundbreaking wellness solutions.
That's where microsampling once again comes into play. Blood microsampling provides a more precise, more accurate, and all-around smarter alternative to outmoded urine-in-a-cup methods for monitoring controlled substances, creating new opportunities for recovery and new hope for those affected by substance abuse. And it's particularly welcome in environments where needles may not be appropriate.
The use of microsampling in addiction recovery is only beginning. Our relationship with
drugs of abuse, substance abuse recovery, and drug testing is changing. Expect VAMS to be a key part of a future that may look very different, as it provides a previously missing link between the promise and potential of health and wellness innovation and the stuff of human life.
Reach out to a Microsampling Specialist and discover smarter specimen collection today.
With a microsampling device, a very small sample of blood can be collected from a patient anywhere in the world. It works just with a single finger prick and collects just a few microliters of blood. Microsampling has dramatic positive implications for the science and healthcare fields because it makes healthcare smarter and research and patient monitoring much easier. Here are some of the ways that microsampling is changing the world.
In recent years, the field of biomedical and clinical research has seen the adaptation of genomic, proteomic and other omics-based approaches in understanding the mechanisms of diseases. The approach has also been useful in the identification of biomarkers for diagnostics and therapeutic development.
Topics: Clinical Research
If you are on the United Network for Organ Sharing list for a kidney transplant, you know about the long wait, dialysis, and living with chronic kidney disease. Every day you hoped the Network would call. Then one day it happened. You grabbed a suitcase you packed long ago and headed to the hospital.
Topics: Patient Monitoring
The breakthrough benefits of Volumetric Absorptive Microsampling (VAMS™) technology in the context of patient monitoring are becoming more broadly appreciated. This revolutionary, quantitative, volumetrically accurate dried capillary blood collection method, performed using Mitra® devices, is opening new care pathways and new possibilities for innovation in science, research, and healthcare.
The importance of this missing link in patient monitoring extends to one of the most relevant issues of our time: monitoring drugs of abuse. Recovery systems are facing increasing burdens of legal liability and pressure to produce results in the face of a devastating nationwide opioid crisis. Applications of microsampling technology in drug testing are already being explored, with significant implications for the future of this field in which progress and fresh ideas are so needed.
San Diego-based Alcala Labs is an example of how small changes can make a big difference. Alcala uses VAMS technology, developed by Neoteryx, in its CleanAssure™ system, which it supplies to drug and addiction recovery facilities across America. It replaces outmoded, binary urine-in-a-cup methods with dried blood collection using Mitra devices. This new approach is more sophisticated and reliable, helping addiction professionals stay informed and patients stay clean. Plus, capillary blood collection methods are preferred in environments where venipuncture with needles may not be the most appropriate way to go.
“We believe that transitioning from urine to dried blood samples will simplify the process for patients and ease the burden for recovery centers,” says Matt Rifat, Alcala Labs President. “We are pleased that microsampling has become a viable option, and Neoteryx’s VAMS technology presented us with the best available solution.”
The future of drug abuse treatment and recovery is brighter than it may sometimes seem. The work of Alcala Labs is shedding light on how smarter, more specific techniques can pave the way for a new world of addiction care that is at once more scientific and more compassionate, with transformative implications for the entire landscape of health and wellness, wherever perfecting patient monitoring is paramount.
From 10 or 20 microliters of biological fluid, leading scientists, researchers, and professionals can yield a lot of information, a lot of innovation, and a whole lot of hope.