Physicians and patients in Brazil now will have access to advanced genetic testing technologies through a new partnership between Baylor College of Medicine’s Medical Genetics Laboratory and DASA, a major, Brazil-based medical diagnostic laboratory that serves as the largest medical reference lab in Latin America and is the fourth largest provider of diagnostic services in the world.

"There was a real need to bring state-of-the-art genetic testing resources, such as microarray testing and next-generation sequencing, to clinicians and patients in Brazil and other areas of Latin America," said Dr. Luis M. Franco, assistant professor of molecular and human genetics at BCM, who is involved in the development of international partnerships for the Medical Genetics Laboratory.

Better understanding

Advancing genetic testing resources can help physicians have a more comprehensive and individualized understanding of a patient’s medical conditions, he said.

The lab in Houston will conduct the genetic testing and their experts will prepare a clinical report that will be sent back to the laboratory in Brazil, which will convey the results to the ordering physicians.

DASA will also have access to the BCM lab’s extensive database of clinical microarray results and to the expertise of BCM’s geneticists and diagnostic laboratory scientists.

Additional opportunities

Over time, the partnership is expected to open opportunities for technology transfer and joint development of tests tailored to the local market, said Franco

BCM faculty will also be involved in educating physicians in Brazil on advances in genetic and genomic testing.

For more information on the Medical Genetics Laboratory, please contact T. Brandon Perthuis, Director, Business Development, office (713) 798-5767 or fax 713-798-4187. His email is