MEDICA 2006 in Düsseldorf will see Greiner Bio-One present the world’s first saliva collection and quantification system, based on a liquid collection medium for which a patent has been filed. Use of this new system allows standardisation of saliva preanalytics for the first time ever. This applies to standardised collection and preparation, as well as storage, of saliva samples. It is the prerequisite for the development of new and innovative saliva diagnostics.

The easy method of collection, together with permanent availability, makes saliva an interesting alternative to other specimen materials. For a broad range of laboratory parameters, saliva can provide similar information to that given by blood or urine, allowing for conclusions on the status of a person’s health. In future, saliva diagnostics will be a suitable alternative if results are required quickly and efficiently.

The areas of application for saliva diagnostics are varied, ranging from therapeutic drug monitoring to drug tests in traffic controls or at work. Furthermore, many clinical chemical parameters, e.g. electrolytes or hormones in saliva, can be detected in addition to bacteria and viruses.

Previously, the problem with saliva was that the collected sample quantity was subject to variations. Due to this, it was difficult to determine the quantity of saliva for the analysis. The Greiner Bio-One preanalytic product experts have found the solution for this: the world’s first collection system based on a saliva extraction solution as well as a method for quantitative determination of the saliva quantity, allowing the standardisation of saliva preanalytics.

The advantage of saliva, is that the collection is non-invasive, and thus totally painless for the patient. HIV infection via saliva is virtually impossible, an advantage that provides increased occupational safety for medical personnel. The sample can be collected easily, safely and at any time by a doctor, medical personnel or from the patient him / herself. No particular location is required (e.g. on the ward or in the laboratory). In contrast to urine, the presence of a supervisor during saliva collection does not pose an invasion of privacy. Corruption of the sample, either intended or unaware, is prevented. In contrast to other saliva collection systems, a dry mouth is in general not a problem with the Greiner Bio-One system.