Ancon Medical shines light on Raynaud’s phenomenon, scleroderma

Skin disease can be fatal, but early detection from devices like Ancon Medial NBT can be crucial in treatment

Sometimes seen as only an inconvenience,  Raynaud’s phenomenon and scleroderma disease aren’t always recognized as the serious conditions they are, with scleroderma even being potentially fatal. However, the disease that is primarily revealed through a hardening of the skin can have serious consequences depending upon the location, and early diagnosis is critical to providing successful treatment.

That’s why Ancon Medical, Inc. is helping to recognize Raynaud’s phenomenon and scleroderma disease month in February. Raynaud’s phenomenon is a disease that causes areas of the body to feel unusually cold and numb in cold temperatures, while also creating discoloration in the skin. And while Raynaud’s phenomenon primarily only affects quality of life, it can also be a symptom of scleroderma, which can be far more serious, especially if undetected, said Ancon Medical CEO Wesley Baker.

“Shining a light on these sometimes overlooked disease not only creates awareness of these conditions, it also reminds people of the importance of getting screened,” said Baker, a member of the Royal Society of Medicine. “Like most diseases, an early diagnosis can mean early treatment, which is especially important in the case of scleroderma.”

Raynaud’s phenomenon is as common as arthritis and hay fever, but many haven’t ever heard of the disease, or are aware of the possibility they could have this condition. Raynaud’s phenomenon is more common in cold weather regions and among women, but anyone can be affected by it. While considered more of an inconvenience, Raynaud’s can be an early symptom of scleroderma, which can have serious effects if it infects internal organs and other vital parts of the body.

Raynaud’s phenomenon and scleroderma are precisely the kind of diseases where Ancon Medical’s advanced disease screening technology can be useful. Noninvasive, simple to use, and affordable, the Ancon Medical Nanoparticle Biomarker Tagging (NBT) technology can detect the presence of disease by measuring exhaled breath for signs of the disease.

The technology works by detecting in exhaled breath specific “biomarkers,” which are DNA-protein controlled volatile organic compounds (VOCs) metabolites specific to diseases. Researchers have discovered biomarkers for more than 400 diseases, with Raynaud’s and scleroderma among those.

By programming an Ancon Medial NBT device to hunt for these specific molecules, the disease can be diagnosed early. No technology on the market is as sensitive at detecting biomarkers than NBT, which can detect the fingerprints of the disease at concentrations as low as one ion in 10,000 cubic centimeters, giving the device a sensitivity that could be measured down to a single molecule.

“Being programmable makes an Ancon Medical NBT device quite versatile. It can be used to screen for diseases like scleroderma and later be reprogrammed to test for a range of other diseases when needed,” Baker said. “Lung cancer, cervical cancer, the Ebola virus, tuberculosis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease are just some of the diseases where known biomarkers have been discovered.”

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