In 1989 Roche entered into an agreement with Cetus to develop diagnostic applications for the novel technique polymerase chain reaction (PCR). A new area of molecular diagnostics began and genes and pathogen genomes have been used to diagnose disease since that point. Automated laboratory platforms were created to facilitate the workflow and allow for accurate and precise processing of patient blood samples in a highly streamlined manner. In this chapter the use of nucleic acids in molecular diagnostics will be described and their application to important human diseases. Examples are discussed with respect to which nucleic acid marker has provided strong clinical utility and impact to healthcare.
Part of the book: Nucleic Acids