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A new test can determine blood type in seconds

Researchers say they have developed a cheap, easy test to determine a patient’s blood type with nearly perfect accuracy in a matter of seconds — an innovation that could help determine the blood type of patients in remote settings or conflict zones.

The new assay is able to pinpoint whether a person is type A, B, or O in just 30 seconds, and determine the blood type in full detail in about two minutes. That could allow for quicker action in providing safe blood transfusions or organ transplants. Results on the new device were published Wednesday in Science Translational Medicine.

Conventional tests to determine blood type take anywhere between 10 and 20 minutes. Other, newer technologies have cut that time down to under five minutes. But until now, researchers hadn’t been able to consolidate the two-step process of typing blood into one quick, simple action.