Ancon Medical to wear red for World Encephalitis Day

Ancon Medical Inc. CEO Wesley Baker said that wearing red clothing on Thursday, Feb. 22 will raise awareness of the rare, but dangerous, disease and encourage early screening.

Ancon Medical developed Nanoparticle Biomarker Tagging (NBT), an advanced medical screening technology behind a groundbreaking medical screening device that can find the “fingerprint” of many types of diseases through a simple breath test, including encephalitis.

“Though encephalitis is a serious disease that can have impactful consequences, surveys show that up to 80 percent of the public isn’t even aware of the disease or its effects,” Baker said. “By wearing red this Thursday, you can help bring more focus on the disease and its symptoms. Like many other diseases, early detection of encephalitis is vital, and the sooner and easier this can happen, the better the outcome for the patient.”

Encephalitis is a disease that causes the swelling of the brain. It can be caused by a number of different viruses or it can occur when the immune system attacks the brain in error.

The disease can affect individuals of all ages, each potentially in different ways. And while rarely fatal, it can have serious consequences, including memory loss, partial paralysis, nerve damage and can even send patients into a coma. Screening for encephalitis can also be a challenge for patients, as methods can include MRIs, CT scans, spinal taps and even a brain biopsy in some cases.

Ancon Medical’s NBT device offers a convenient alternative to invasive testing, especially for early screening. The device detects the tell-tale “biomarker,” a DNA-protein controlled volatile organic compounds (VOCs) metabolites specific to diseases, which is exhaled by an infected individual.

By using Nanoparticle Biomarker Tagging technology to scan for those molecules, an NBT device can detect the biomarker in trace amounts down to a single molecule, with a sensitivity of one ion in 10,000 cubic centimeters.

All that’s needed is for researchers to discover the specific biomarker molecule for each specific diseases, as they have with encephalitis and more than 400 other diseases including cervical cancer, lyme disease, lung cancer, the Ebola virus, tuberculosis and COPD. Once identified, the NBT device can be programmed to search for the target molecule.

“An NBT device offers many advantages for medical offices and clinics that provide health screenings. It is affordable, compact, versatile and can be operated by non-medical staff,” Baker said. “A medical office equipped with an NBT device can offer non-invasive screening, providing a first warning that people can use to get the critical early treatment so necessary for so many diseases, including encephalitis.”

Ancon Medical and its associated company Ancon Technologies Ltd., has patents on NBT technology in both the U.S. and U.K. Ancon Medical is a member of Medical Alley, a Medical trade association based in Minnesota.

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