Wasbeer went to Redlabs
When I was in Zellik (next to Brussels) about a week ago, to deliver the blood samples of some friends and myself at RedLabs, I had quite a long conversation with Kristin Metzger, the researcher who is responsible for XMRV testing at RedLabs. She even showed me around the Lab, wich was quite amazing. The reason they're just offering the culture test now, is because it's the only test they can do 'validated by the WPI'. WPI (or VIPDX) sold/gave them a license, but under strict conditions for quality standards. It took REDlabs some time to 'learn' the protocol, and it was not before every sample provided to them by WPI gave the right result, that they were allowed to start commercial testing.
If you bring them your blood, patient-form (and money) they will run your test immediately. That might seem unfair, because they have a waiting list of about 500 people (a lot of whom already have frozen samples at RedLabs) but they are going to contact all of them to ask if they still want to be tested and if so, if they want to do the culture test (expensive, bigger chance for false negatives, but already available) or wait for the serology test (cheaper, smaller (but not zero) chance of false negatives, but not yet available). So everyone on that waiting list should be expecting a letter soon, if I understood them correctly. Metzgers estimation of when the serology test would be available at RedLabs was 'about 3 months, depending on the validation process'. In the end Redlabs wants to offer the complete XMRV-testing panel, including culture, serology and the third one I forgot but you might know what I mean. If you print out the test-orderform at the Redlabs website, the blood products that are demanded for an XMRV test are suitable to do all three of those tests. It's to prevent you ever have to (fysically) come back to RedLabs if you want additional XMRV testing done once you've done one of the three. Results will only be provided after
payment, because they've had some bad experiences with that in the past.
Mrs. Metzger is on a two week holiday now (while my blood is in her little culture-chamber) but I think she'll be back at work this coming monday. I thought she was friendly and dedicated (also a little cute, but I guess that's OT :Retro tongue
. The other people I met there were also really nice.
YES I AM VERY NERVOUS about the result I will have within one or two weeks. If it's positive, it will be a new era for me after 11 years, if it's negative, it might be a false one, so I still have to wait a couple of months to be sure. It was quite a dilemma, go for the culture or wait for serology, I hope I chose wisely.
PS: I found it very easy to ask questions on the phone to the people at Redlabs, it's a small company, but it might be useful to know that there are people working there that speak Dutch, French, German, English and Spanish.