Made up of three divisions - automated/routine, toxicology/special chemistry and immunoassay - this automated laboratory performs a wide range of biochemical tests and screening profiles. Services include drug monitoring and substance abuse detection. The laboratory conducts fetal lung maturity, glycohemoglobin and sweat tests. A maternal alpha fetoprotein (AFP) subsection specializes in the detection of fetal abnormalities, employing a combination of AFP, HCG, and estriol screening.
Dedicated to the evaluation of male fertility, this specialized service is directed by a Board Certified Reproductive Endocrinologist. The laboratory analyzes semen specimens for count, volume and viability and assesses for genital infection and acrosomal morphology. Using a hamster egg assay that mimics fertilization conditions, the laboratory conducts antisperm antibody testing to determine whether antibodies are interfering with sperm penetration of the cervical mucus or ova. The laboratory also performs intrauterine insemination (IUI) evaluation and processes semen to select sperm for IUI. Sperm cytopreservation is also available.
The Cytogenetics Laboratory performs chromosome analyses on blood lymphocytes, bone marrow cells, amniotic fluid cells, and skin fibroblasts. The Lab can perform Fluorescent insitu hybridization (FISH) when routine chromosome analyses are inconclusive. The laboratory is equipped as a tissue culture facility and can establish shirt-term skin fibroblast and amniotic fluid cell lines. A board certified cytogeneticist directs the Cytogenetics Laboratory and is available for consultation and interpretation of results. A clinical geneticist affiliate with the laboratory specializes in genetic counseling and clinical generic diagnosis.
A fully accredited unit, the University Hospital blood bank is particularly expert in pheresis. Autologous and directed donations for inpatient and ambulatory surgery are accepted. A team of medical experts evaluates difficult blood types, abnormal fibrinogens, use of fibrin glue, and related conditions.
The Hematology and Coagulation laboratory provides state-of-the-art testing for patients with a variety of blood disorders. Both routine and highly specialized tests are performed. Routine tests included complete blood counts, blood cell differentials, reticulocyte counts, prothrombin times (PTT), and partial thromboplastin times (PTT). The laboratory also performs more complex tests that are often needed to evaluate patients with clotting problems. For example, a platelet function analyzer (PFA-100) is now used to rapidly screen patients for disorders of platelet function. Platelet aggregation studies are also performed. Tests utilized to diagnose bleeding disorders including clotting factor determinations and various assays for von Willebrand disease (vWD) like ristocetin cofactor activity and vWF antigen. Tests offered to evaluate abnormal clotting include protein C and S antigen/activity, antithrombin antigen/activity, and assays for lupus anticoagulants. The lab also performs testing for platelet-specific and heparin-dependent antibodies. The latter can cause a conditional call heparin-induced thrombocytopenia (HIT), which may result in life-threatening clotting if it is not recognized. Specialized testing for red blood cell disorders included hemoglobin electrophoresis and osmotic fragility. Consultative services are available to help determine the most appropriate tests for patients with suspected hematologic disorders. An on-site outpatient laboratory provides hematology testing for patients visiting the hematology and oncology clinics.
This premier laboratory specializes in the diagnosis of Lyme Disease, utilizing such techniques as ELISA, Western blotting, and cell mediated immunity assays. In support of University Hospital's AIDS Center, it is also equipped with a modern flow cytometry unit that provides both simple quantitative measurement of CD4/CD8 lymphocytes in peripheral blood, as well as full panel assessment of complex lymphohematopoietic disease in tissues or body fluids. The laboratory provides a full gamut of immunoglobulin quantitations - immunofixation; ANA and specific nuclear antigens; complement components by immunoassay; plus functional testing, and related studies. It has the capability to perform a full range of serologic studies for infectious and autoimmune diseases. See the Immunology web site for further details.
A broad spectrum of testing services in aerobic/anerobic bacteriology, parasitology, mycology, mycobacteriology, and virology are provided by this lab. In addition to isolation, identification, and susceptibility testing of microbial pathogens, tests for bacterial and cryptococcal antigens are conducted. Clostridia difficile toxin, Chlamydia nucleic acid, and malaria/babesiosis are routinely performed. In conjunction with Special Histology, the laboratory probes tissue for organismal RNA and DNA.
This laboratory specializes in DNA testing for a variety of inherited and acquired genetic conditions. Included among the diagnostic services are prenatal and carrier testing for cystic fibrosis and diagnosis of the fragile X syndrome. Referred cases may require blood sampling of relevant family members and/or other documentation. Other services include B and T cell gene rearrangements. The laboratory, which also provides counseling services, is under the direction of a board certified clinical geneticist.