Trends Shaping the Future of the Diagnostic Space

Over the years, the Indian diagnostics sector has experienced exponential growth. Traditional medical practice has given way to evidence-based medical practice and today, to a large extent, physicians rely on the diagnostic segment to validate, accurately diagnose diseases, to provide the necessary treatment protocols, as well as the change in consumer psyche and preference. Clearly, diagnostic medicine has become a key component of the overall healthcare management program.

The home diagnostics market is estimated to be around $10 billion, and over the next five years, it is expected to grow at a CAGR of nearly 12% to 13%. It is therefore not surprising that the diagnostics sector has become the fastest growing key service sector in India. Major growth drivers for the sector include an increase in healthcare spending and life expectancy, rising income levels, increased awareness of preventative testing, improved diagnostic testing, an increase in lifestyle-related diseases and government health care initiatives.

Impact of the pandemic on the diagnostic sector

The COVID-19 pandemic in the past two years has shaken the medical diagnostic industry like never before. The need for diagnostics like RT-PCR and antigen tests increased dramatically overnight. High demand for COVID-19 tests and treatments forced diagnostic manufacturers to refocus their operations with greater emphasis on home collection, though many struggled to muster the funds and staff to do so.

There have been a few trends that have shaped the diagnostic space in India:

genetic test
This is one of the most advanced and demanded diagnostic trends. There are many types of genetic testing based on the required result and the individual being tested.

Predictive genetic test: This type of test helps determine the probability that a person may contract a disease, whether or not they have a family history. Predictive tests are available for health problems such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, and various single-gene diseases.

Diagnostic Genetic Testing: Diagnostic genetic testing is used to determine or confirm the diagnosis of a genetic disorder. Tests of this nature can occur at any time in a person’s life, even before birth. The test result can influence the choice of treatment and how a disease develops. Chromosomal analysis, direct DNA analysis, and biochemical and genetic tests are among several of these tests.
Genomic Testing: A genomic test takes a closer look at your genome, which is your entire collection of “code,” or genetic instructions. One technique that your doctor can use to predict how your cancer will progress and which drugs may be most effective against it is “genomic testing.” It is also known as “DNA sequencing”. Instead of focusing on one gene, the test looks at all of your genes.

Metabolomics: A new technology called metabolomics, which is the comprehensive examination of metabolites in a biological sample, has the potential to guide the practice of precision medicine. Metabolomics, which provides detailed descriptions of these phenotypes.

Proteomics: Proteomics-based technologies are used in a variety of ways for various research settings, including identification of different diagnostic markers, development of vaccine candidates, understanding mechanisms of pathogenicity, alteration of expression patterns in response to various signals and the interpretation of functional protein pathways in multiple diseases. Because proteomics involves classifying and analyzing the complete protein fingerprints of a genome.

Diagnostics in real time
One of the most innovative diagnostic methods, from portable devices that can be used to track glucose to real-time PCR tests, real-time diagnostics have been truly innovative.

Wearable biosensors can collect a wide range of physical health data, including heart rate, blood pressure, skin temperature, respiratory rate, and body mobility. These devices can be integrated into watches, clothing, bandages, glasses, contact lenses, and rings. Real-time diagnostics offer a significantly larger and more reliable data set for clinical decision-making than more conventional diagnostic procedures that record a “snapshot” image of a patient for a specific parameter. They allow someone to be monitored continuously, provide quick information on any deviations that may be noticed, and can be used to monitor someone’s general health and well-being.

Artificial intelligence in medical imaging
Artificial intelligence (AI) is a revolutionary technology that analyzes complex data using computerized algorithms. Imaging is one of the most potential clinical applications of AI, and increasing attention is being paid to establishing and optimizing its performance to make it easier to detect and quantify a variety of clinical disorders. Studies using computer-aided diagnostics have shown high specificity, sensitivity, and accuracy in detecting minor radiographic abnormalities, which can improve public health.

Faster than traditional laboratory tests, point-of-care testing (POCT) allows clinicians to identify diseases at or near the patient’s site. Integration of microfluidics into POCT enables fluid handling and detection in a single device with less sample demand. The challenging circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic have greatly increased the importance of POCT. In addition to glucose monitoring, pregnancy and infertility tests, infectious disease tests, cholesterol tests, and cardiac indicators, there are many point-of-care tests and diagnostic tools on the market, and the numbers are growing. grow up.

Ongoing development in the healthcare sector, especially diagnostics, aids in early detection and intervention and guides healthcare professionals on the best possible therapy method for that particular individual. From trivial pathologies to malignant tumors, diagnostic advances have come a long way; This advance not only helps in treatment but also improves the quality and longevity of life.



The opinions expressed above are those of the author.


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