Analyzer Allows UB to Educate Next Generation of Lab Practitioners

By Cynthia Machamer

Release Date: May 31, 2007 This content is archived.


BUFFALO, N.Y. -- An AxSYM immunoassay analyzer funded through a grant from Abbott Diagnostics will help the Medical Technology Program at the University at Buffalo train the next generation of clinical laboratory science practitioners with state-of-the-art skills and knowledge.

The analyzer is valued at $127,000. The grant through Abbott's Instrument Donation Program also includes an estimated $30,000 a year in supplies and equipment support for multiple years. UB's Medical Technology Program is in the Department of Biotechnical and Clinical Laboratory Sciences in the School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.

UB was selected from among 102 applicants to Abbott's Instrument Donation Program to be one of 16 universities and colleges to be awarded a "Labs Are Vital" grant. The equipment was provided through Abbott Diagnostics' "Labs are Vital" program, a multi-pronged, multi-year education and awareness initiative designed to highlight the critical role that laboratory medicine plays in human health.

"We are delighted and excited about Abbott Diagnostics' commitment to the future of clinical laboratory science professions," said Robert L. Klick, UB associate professor and director of the Medical Technology Program.

He explained that the analyzer will allow faculty to incorporate current technologies and instrumentation at several points in the curriculum. "The AxSYM immunoassay system will allow the introduction of third-generation immunoassay technologies in clinical immunology and clinical chemistry throughout [students'] junior year," Klick said.

He said students will use the instrument for testing infectious agents, such as cytomegalovirus and toxoplasmosis; to analyze tumor markers; to enable an understanding of both the complexity of disease pathophysiology and the sophistication of the immunochemistry and intricacy of instrumental engineering and operational features; and to test for thyroid function, therapeutic drug monitoring, toxicology, biomarkers of myocardial injury and iron metabolism.

"The addition of this instrument represents a quantum leap forward in the level of applied

laboratory technology, training and educational experience available for medical technology students at UB," Klick said.

Klick concluded: "We are grateful to Abbott Diagnostics for recognizing the acute need to increase both the number of graduates and quality of medical technology training and for making this grant opportunity available to benefit the delivery of laboratory medicine in the nation."

"Abbott's 'Labs are Vital' program addresses the need to train and support the next generation of laboratory professionals on high-tech, real-world equipment," said Don Patton, vice president of Abbott's global diagnostic commercial operations. "Our nation's clinical laboratories are facing a critical shortage of qualified laboratory personnel. Providing educational programs with additional resources to train future laboratorians through programs at universities like UB, is a first step for us to help."

Abbott Diagnostics is a global leader in in vitro diagnostics and offers a broad range of innovative instrument systems and tests for hospitals, reference labs, blood banks, physician offices and clinics.

The University at Buffalo is a premier research-intensive public university, the largest and most comprehensive campus in the State University of New York. UB's more than 27,000 students pursue their academic interests through more than 300 undergraduate, graduate and professional degree programs. Founded in 1846, the University at Buffalo is a member of the Association of American Universities. The School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences is one of five schools that constitute UB's Academic Health Center.