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Advance Diagnostic Techniques Project (ADT)


Expand the resources and access to telomere length testing to pulmonologists around the US and the world.

What will it involve (time, team, activity set)

Johns Hopkins Pathology is the only hospital-based telomere length diagnostic facility in the world. Its Telomere Lab has unique technical and clinical resources for measuring and interpreting telomere length studies in clinical areas. There is a need to bring the available technologies to accommodate a larger volume and using newer equipment. This will require resources for personnel and equipment.

What is the financial resource needed to promote this project?

Our goal is achievable in the next 2.5 years (by June 2020) with an investment of $250,000 needed to cover purchase of new equipment and the recruitment/retention of the most experienced personnel.

Expected outcome

If implemented, we can envision this change in medical practice in the next 5 years:

  • 1

    Stratification of lung transplant risk assessment and treatment by telomere length: This will improve recognizing short telomere patients before lung transplant and appropriately implement precautions and adjustments to current treatment protocols.

  • 2

    Telomere length and telomere genetics in lieu of the need for lung biopsy for familial pulmonary fibrosis patients. There is an increased rate of surgical complications after lung biopsy in patients with idiopathic lung disease. Genetic and molecular diagnosis has been shown to be a better predictor of diagnosis than tissue diagnosis. A wide and measured implementation of telomere length testing will improve diagnosis and stratification in clinical trials.