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Korean company develops device that can diagnose cancer with just a drop of blood

  • Seoul-based company BBB said they have developed a ‘sensor-equipped portable device’ that can examine a droplet of blood to detect cancer signals
  • The product, named MarkB, is slated to hit the Korean market by the end of this year

To diagnose cancer, doctors use a bunch of examinations like an MRI, a CT scan or other laboratory tests, such as an analysis of your urine or a biopsy of a suspicious area, to help guide the diagnosis.

With the exception of blood cancers, blood tests generally can’t absolutely tell whether you have cancer or some other noncancerous condition, but they can give your doctor clues about what’s going on inside your body. These tests or procedures are only conducted at the hospital setting.

But what if similar cancer diagnostics procedures could be achieved in the comfort of your home?

This could be possible by using a portable blood testing device developed by South Korean health care technology startup BBB.

Founded in 2014, Seoul-based company BBB said they have developed a ‘sensor-equipped portable device’ named MarkB that can examine a droplet of blood to detect cancer signals, according to report by Korean Herald.

According to BBB founder and CEO Choi Jae-kyu, the firm has positioned MarkB as a prognosis device. It is intended for use by post-surgery cancer patients required to undergo routine checkups every three to six months.

Though patients would still have to go to the hospital for imaging-based examinations, they could conduct blood tests in the convenience of their homes.

“With good references, we want to be able to position the device as a cancer prevention tool for use by any interested individual,” said Choi

MarkB is easy to use. It works just like random blood sugar kits. The user simply needs to prick a fingertip with a needle and dab the blood onto a testing strip.

The device needs only 30 microliters of blood to perform the blood test that makes use of two techniques: one separates out plasma from the red blood cells and the second one separates out cancer-derived proteins with electromagnetic waves.

MarkB is reportedly hitting the Korean market by the end of 2018.