New test may help detect vitamin D deficiency earlier

New test may help detect vitamin D deficiency earlier

By Nathan Gray, 27-Jan-2011

Related topics: Industry

A new diagnostic vitamin D assay to be released in Europe may help to detect early deficiency, and could help to provide more accurate data for dieticians and researchers.

Developed by the diagnostic lab technology company Abbott to detect the amount of 25-hydroxy vitamin D, the ARCHITECT 25-OH Vitamin D is a new diagnostic test to measure levels of vitamin D in blood using an automated instrument system.

Abbot announced Conformité Européenne (CE) marking for the assay, which is intended for the assessment of 25-hydroxy vitamin D in human serum and plasma to determine vitamin D status, but added that currently the test is not approved for use in the US.

Abbot said the assay will provide a quick and accurate gauge of vitamin D status in blood samples – which may provide greater opportunities for preventive and therapeutic interventions in at risk populations.

D deficiency

“Vitamin D deficiency is recognized as a global health problem, and vitamin D supplementation should be considered for all people at risk of vitamin D deficiency,” said Dr Jean-Claude Souberbielle, of the Université Paris.

He added that determination of the serum vitamin D concentration and supplementation according to the measured deficiency level is important for patients with osteoporosis, chronic kidney disease, abnormalities in absorbing food nutrients, and more generally, in those with a disease or a treatment that may impair bone health.

The UK National Institute of Health (NiH) said that whilst testing for levels of 25-hydroxy vitamin D is currently the most accurate way to determine vitamin D levels, many assays that are used can be notoriously inaccurate.
“As a major diagnostic lab, serum 25-OH vitamin D has become an increasingly important diagnostic marker to us,” said Dr. Frans AL van der Horst, from the Reinier de Graaf Group, Netherlands.

Brian Blaser, senior vice president, diagnostic operations for Abbott said that the new vitamin D assay is “a valuable and convenient addition” which provides an automated test for samples that may previously have been sent to outside reference labs.