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How To Test Your Blood, Anytime, Anywhere In The World

34 Comment(s)

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I’ll admit it.

I’m a total self-quantification nerd.

You know this if you read my article “A Crash Course On Finding Out What Is Happening Inside Your Body“, in which I tell you about a ton of different blood, saliva and urine tests that you can do.

I also spend several hours per week doing wellness and performance consulting with people who have done baseline, performance, longevity testing with Pacific Elite Fitness and WellnessFX.

So my nerdy self is super excited about this new thing I’ve found called “Talking20“, which we talk about in the video above and I give you the nitty-gritty details on below…

Basically, Talking20 is disrupting health as we know it by merging biology with technology to deliver personal health data in a way that I think may actually trigger a personal health revolution.

Here’s how it works:

You send in a few drops of blood on one of their kits, and you’ve opened the gateway to everything happening inside you, anytime you want it.  Talking20 is using mass spectrometry to analyze its blood samples, the same technology used by NASA and the Environmental Protection Agency use to conduct their studies of very small samples taken from all over on (and off) the planet.

Using this technology, Talking20 will eventually run 100′s of blood tests off a single, convenient drop of your dried blood.

The instrumentation and techniques of mass spectrometry earned Nobel Prizes in 1922 and then again for advances in 2002. In short, the way mass spectrometry works is that blood collected on the cards is hit with an accelerated dose of electrons.  During this collision, the molecules being measured are knocked out of the sample and pushed into a gas state.  This accelerated beam of gases is then passed through a magnetic field, which allows each molecule to be measured based on its unique properties.  This technique can be performed with solar wind samples collected outside the Earth’s atmosphere (like at NASA) – or from samples collected on Talking20’s special filter paper.

Each biomarker that is tested at Talking20 must be specially calibrated in house and each test is currently being built in a stepwise process. The “Gold Card panel” that Heather and I talk about in the video above is made up of several well known tests, such as cholesterol and vitamins, but over the next three years they are developing literally hundreds of other tests you can get off one card.

I think this stuff is going to literally blow the roof off personal biohacking and the ability to peer into your personal health and performance in real time as you test anytime, anywhere in the world.

Examples of tests they are are planning to include are:

  • All organ function related proteins, including current and future indications of organ function: liver, kidney, pancreas, autoimmunity problems and more.
  • All vitamins and minerals, including all fat and water soluble vitamins, and circulating minerals, amino acids, electrolytes and more.
  • All hormones, including cholesterols, cortisol, testosterone, DHEA, estrogens, progesterone and more.
  • All disease proteins, including current and future indicators of cancers, such as colon, prostate, breast, kidney, lung cancers and more.
  • All future biomarkers they ever discover, which are included in your future panels at no extra cost.

——————————–

How To Test With Talking20

OK, I know you probably want to get down to the bottom line and know what this kind of stuff actually costs and how the process works:

1. You go to the Talking20 website and order one Gold Card package, which includes all test materials and all online services, and is good for 36 separate tests (3 years worth if you test, say, ever month).

2. This Gold Card package retails at $1295 USD (but you get a 10% discount if you use code BENTEST, which lowers this to $1165).

3. Compared  to conventional phlebotomy laboratory testing, the life of this package will provide over $150,000 worth of blood test, for $1165. Dang.

Obviously this isn’t pocket change, but if you want in on every test that is developed over the next three years, and you don’t want to pay any extra for any of those future tests, this is a no-brainer – or at least a very nerdy and fun experiment for any biohacker or someone who simply wants to find out more about their body at anytime, anywhere in the world (watch the video above to hear my wheels spinning about how something like this could be used).

Question, comments, or feedback about how to test your blood anytime, anywhere in the world? Leave your thoughts below. That BENTEST discount code expires in a month, so sign-up soon if you want to do this.

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34 Responses to “How To Test Your Blood, Anytime, Anywhere In The World”

  1. Hi Ben,

    The subject matter that you put forth makes sense. I am keen to explore the options. Does your range of services or those of your partners extend to the shores of the UK?

    Kindest regards,

    Simon

  2. Hi Ben,

    Sorry, I have just heard on the interview that the specific testing can be arranged from anywhere in the World.

    Regards,

    Simon

  3. 'Mash says:

    Ben, were you flying a X-Wing in that video clip?

  4. Trirod says:

    Ben,

    Thanks for sharing and offer to interpret. I have a question about using test for determining if healing is occurring. I have torn meniscus and being older gent, 65, I don't want to quit racing tris. Doc conservatively says let it try and heal and more than likely no more running or strenuous biking. Can a test protocol determine if my meniscus is healing thru rest and supplements and rehab? I wonder if this testing combined with things like Regenexx may unlock may doors on healing. Thanks in advance.

    ps also interested in particle size for cholesterol testing as not sure what standard testing markers provides?

  5. Trevor says:

    Hey Ben,

    Do you know if the Cholesterol part of the test breaks down the numbers for big and small particle sizes of LDL?

  6. David Laskey says:

    Hey Ben, trying to understand the packages. Would the gold card package basically be 25 or 36 batteries of tests(all cholesterol, hormones, vitamins, etc), or are these individual tests?

  7. Chris says:

    Can the 36 different test be used on more than 1 person?

  8. Marni says:

    This a great option for testing. Is the testing done from lab to lab consistent? Can I compare numbers from labs I used the past year with numbers from this lab?

    Are all labs equally good?

    Thanks!

    • Yes, all labs are equally good and designed so you can compare values from test to test.

    • Kevin says:

      No, absolutely not!

      • Kevin says:

        As a clinical laboratory professional, and CAP(College of American Pathologists) inspector, with over 17 years of expertise in the field, I am sad to see there are a number of these unregulated and uncertified laboratories popping up all over north america and the rest of the world, preying upon unknowing individuals who dont know any better, but are just looking for answers. These laboratories tout that they use the latest and greatest scientific technologies like LC/MS/MS and GC/MS/MS, but have little to no scientific evidence that they have generated to support their claims that they are producing accurate, reliable clinical results.

        • Kevin says:

          When an inspector such as myself go into these labs (if we are even able to because as I said most are unregulated and uncertified), we find that their validation protocols are truely bordering on criminal when looked upon by clinical laboratory standards. It is clearly evident to me when watching the video and in looking at their website that they do not even have validated protocols in place to accurately measure the analytes that they claim to be able to measure. In the video she even states that they are currently storing all of the cards that they have received and you should be getting your results hopefully by the summer once they have their protocols in place. WOW! People are spending thousands and thousands of dollars on this already, and this lab doesn't even have scientifically valid protocols in place.

          • Kevin says:

            Is DBS (Dried Blood Spot) testing, a valid science?…yes and no. In a very few applications it is proven and very valuable like PKU testing, but in the testing of all of the various analytes they are claiming..absolutely not! I work at one of the leading National Clinical Reference Laboratories in the United States, and have been playing a very integral part in exploring and trying to validate DBS testing for my laboratory, and I can also state with 99.999999999% certainty, that they cannot accurately quantitate those analytes with the volume of blood on that one DBS card. I could go on and on about this subject and could provide pages and pages of scientific evidence to support my position, but this is not the proper avenue. I only want to warn consumers out there to be very wary. There are a lot of Direct to Consumer laboratory testing options available out there from reputable laboratories all across the nation..and world, that provide very accurate and reliable clinical results from traditional sample types (i.e vials of blood, urine). DBS testing though is not at a place ready for mainstream testing. This laboratory certainly does not appear to be in a position to even claim that it is.

          • Heather says:

            Bottom line here: we are looking forward to publishing our QC data online for each test, and are encouraging everyone running our tests to run conventional lab tests at the same time. We think consumers might be surprised how different the values are even between conventional labs. We think getting your own information or ‘baseline’ on a routine basis is the key for each individual person. This gives you the ability to observe changes, and see how your interventions are making a difference.

          • Trirod says:

            So are you saying DBS is more reliable than Kevin asserts to us lay people?

          • Heather says:

            In response to your comments re lab evaluation, we will be happy to have our laboratories and methods evaluated by true third parties when the time is appropriate. As mentioned and described over the last few months, we are currently in a pre-sale and ‘crowdfund’ level of business. This means we are being funded by people who want to help us make low cost, comprehensive, accessible blood testing a reality for anyone who wants it. However, this does mean it is taking us time to raise the funds we need for the dream laboratory we want. It’s unfortunate that you have entered labs ‘bordering on criminal,’ and I can assure you we are striving to provide highest quality data possible. Running routine laboratory testing on a shoe-string budget does not mean the data is not valid, or that it can’t be just as high or higher in or quality than provided by other labs. We are committed to this, and will continue to improve our in-house processes over time as quickly as we can. As you know 10% and even 15% error rates are permissible by CLIA certified labs, and I am happy to report that our in-house testing has put us at a better accuracy than those numbers to date.

            Having said that, the changes we were able to observe from ‘baseline values’ of cholesterol after one meal as described in this article (http://talking20.me/2012/12/14/the-burger-curve-2/) do illustrate that the ‘reference ranges’ for particular assays are also only part of the value of personal data. Reference ranges have been established via complicated and sometimes misleading studies themselves, (ie via examining particular populations only) so it can still be useful for individuals to see where they measure up and how they change over time depending on what they try out. Here we saw total cholesterol levels double from baseline in just over an hour after a meal by testing our blood every hour for 10 hours. This is something impossible to ignore or diminish as useless information just because it was done in a ‘non-clinical’ setting. We feel this type of ‘non-clinical’ personal study is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to what we can discover in this way.

        • Heather says:

          Hi Kevin,

          Thank you for your important comments and concerns. We also share these concerns and are committed to providing high quality (ie. CLIA certified standards or better) data, and will not ship anything until we are comfortable with it. In fact, unlike any labs I’m aware of, we are looking forward to publishing our quality control results for the public, perhaps even routinely.

          We are also excited about the new wave of testing modalities coming to the forefront. As a new medical graduate (who turned down residencies in Pathology in order to pursue this venture), I was very impressed by the long-standing methods and high volumes of patient samples I saw processed within the medical system. However, I could also see many opportunities for improvements, modernization of methods, reduction in costs, and opportunities to make data more accessible. I’m sure your experience has shown you similar things. At Talking20 we do not provide a clinical test service – this means physicians do not order, rely on, or control access to our tests. As such we currently do not intend to seek CLIA certification, but will publish our comparable (or better than CLIA) QC results and let consumers decide if what we are showing them is something helpful for them. Of course, we encourage everyone to rely on the advice of their physician for all medical related advice and testing.

  9. TMS71 says:

    I can't hear her.

  10. Joe says:

    At talking20 website, I am unable to find the contact information. I would like to request for more information on testing procedure and a proof of laboratory management verified by third party group.

    I am suspicious and will wait until Talking20 become credible and trustworthy with its testing procedure.

    I will not put my health at stake.

  11. cogrick2 says:

    I may have missed this: Does the test indicate in what unit the quantity is measured? I did not see a unit in the sample report on your indiegogo site. Also, I saw the company did not hit its Indiegogo goal – can you comment on whether they are strongly confident they will be around for another couple years such that I will not lose value by purchasing something more than a single card? This is exciting technology and I appreciate your responses.

  12. Kelcey says:

    I am also interested in cholesterol particle size. Will there be thyroid tests? Any help interpreting results?

  13. Neil Martin says:

    Looks like they are sold out.

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