RareCyte's AccuCyte system has the potential to improve prenatal testing with its non-invasive blood screening options.

Prenatal genetic diagnostics typically requires amniocentesis or chorionic villus sampling. Non-invasive prenatal diagnostics using free DNA floating in a pregnant woman's plasma is becoming increasingly popular because of less risk of miscarriage.

One of the current drawbacks with this type of testing is that only approximately 10 percent of the DNA in a mother's plasma is derived from the fetus, so the testing is currently limited to predicting trisomy. Because of the high degree of maternal contamination it can also be prone to false negatives.

Fetal cells are indeed found in maternal blood, but are very rare. RareCyte's AccuCyte blood separation system helps to separate them from the pack. Because these are single cells without maternal DNA contamination, once they are determined to be fetal, accurate information representing the genome can be obtained.