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Study Models Cost-Effectiveness of Hepatitis C Virus Diagnosis, Treatment in Australia

Researchers from the University of New South Wales and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine reporting in Lancet Regional Health consider the cost-effectiveness of hepatitis C virus (HCV) point-of-care HCV RNA testing or HCV antibody plus reflex RNA testing in high-risk Australian populations, setting the point-of-care testing and treatment approach against standard lab-based HCV RNA or antibody testing on samples collected at an earlier time. Based on data from Australian needle and syringe exchange programs, prison sites, and drug treatment clinics, the team saw significantly lower average costs for HCV treatment initiation in the point-of-care testing situations, though the exact savings varied with the setting considered. "Point-of-care HCV testing enables diagnosis and treatment in a single-visit, increases testing acceptability, and reduces loss to following up, addressing the drop-off in the HCV care cascade," the authors write. "Combining point-of-care HCV antibody and RNA testing could optimize testing outcomes, enhancing cost-effectiveness and patient acceptability."

The Scan

ChatGPT Does As Well As Humans Answering Genetics Questions, Study Finds

Researchers in the European Journal of Human Genetics had ChatGPT answer genetics-related questions, finding it was about 68 percent accurate, but sometimes gave different answers to the same question.

Sequencing Analysis Examines Gene Regulatory Networks of Honeybee Soldier, Forager Brains

Researchers in Nature Ecology & Evolution find gene regulatory network differences between soldiers and foragers, suggesting bees can take on either role.

Analysis of Ashkenazi Jewish Cohort Uncovers New Genetic Loci Linked to Alzheimer's Disease

The study in Alzheimer's & Dementia highlighted known genes, but also novel ones with biological ties to Alzheimer's disease.

Tara Pacific Expedition Project Team Finds High Diversity Within Coral Reef Microbiome

In papers appearing in Nature Communications and elsewhere, the team reports on findings from the two-year excursion examining coral reefs.