MILFORD, Conn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Milford Hospital based pathologist and internationally recognized molecular biologist, Dr. Sin Hang Lee, will resume his clinical testing for Lyme disease at its early stage of infection, according to a recent announcement of Milford Hospital via a Business Wire news release (http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20130730006088/en/Milford-Hospital-Announces-Publication-Article-Dr.-Sin). Dr. Lee's novel low temperature (LoTemp) polymerase chain reaction (PCR) developed at Milford Hospital is highly efficient and accurate in replicating the minute quantity of Lyme bacterial DNA in the blood for DNA sequencing. Clinical testing for patients will resume at the Milford Hospital-affiliated Milford Medical Laboratory, located at 2044 Bridgeport Avenue in Milford under Dr. Lee’s directorship as soon as certain administrative arrangements are completed.
While other PCR tests for Lyme disease have been available for several years, Dr. Lee's highly sensitive and accurate LoTemp nested PCR coupled with DNA sequencing for molecular validation is the only one of its kind being performed in the United States. Early detection and reliable diagnosis of Lyme borreliosis is the key for timely and appropriate treatment of the disease to prevent the infection from going into a chronic phase with potential tissue damages, but the window of diagnostic opportunity at the stage of spirochetemia when the Lyme bacteria are traveling through the blood is short.
DNA sequencing-based testing for Lyme disease allows for earlier diagnosis than the traditional serology lab tests now being widely used. Lyme disease strikes approximately 30,000 people in the United States annually. About 1,600 to 2,000 cases are reported each year in Connecticut, according to 2012 statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (www.cdc.gov). Connecticut has among the highest rates of Lyme disease in the nation.
“In the diagnosis of Lyme disease, valuable time is lost while a physician waits for the rising Lyme disease antibody titers, which may not happen at all in some Lyme disease sufferers,” Dr. Lee explained.
Lyme disease is spread through black-legged deer ticks. Heavy reforestation of Connecticut's once cleared farm lands over the decades has brought with it an over-population of deer across the state. This has led to increasing numbers of reported Lyme disease cases over the years. Individuals seeking to be tested for Lyme disease may call Milford Medical Laboratory, Inc. at (203) 876-7745.