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Knowledge, awareness and usage of molecular biology techniques as medical diagnostic tools among medical laboratory practitioners in nigeria

Authors:Olumide A. Odeyemi , Joseph O. Oyelami
Int J Biol Med Res. 2011; 2(4): 1051 – 1054  |  PDF File

Abstract

This research aim to survey knowledge, awareness and usage of molecular biology techniques among Nigerian medical laboratory scientists and technologists. A four likert-scale questionnaire was self-administered to fifty voluntary participants from five states in Nigeria. Thirty-seven questionnaires were correctly filled and returned which were then statistically analyzed. Results obtained showed that 17(45.9%) respondents were aware of molecular biology while 24(64.8%) were satisfactorily aware of molecular biology techniques as medical diagnostic tools. 15(40.5%) were of the opinion that it was included in their training curriculum. 29 (78.4%) supported incorporation of molecular techniques into medical laboratory training curriculum. However, 21(56.8%) have not attended seminar or workshop on molecular biology techniques before. 15(40.5%) are familiar with genomic DNA extraction. 2(5.4%) have extracted bacteria DNA recently. 18(48.6%) cannot extract DNA but 14(37.8%) can extract DNA if guided. On Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) awareness and usage, 17(45.9%) have sometimes heard of PCR, 14(37.8%) recently heard of it while 5(17.5%) never heard of it. 9(24.3%) became aware of PCR in textbooks, 16(43.2%) during class lectures, 4(10.8%) heard from seminars or conferences and 1(2.7%) from internet. 27(92.9%) were aware of it usage, 3(8.1%) have forgotten it uses. 20(54.1%) have never seen PCR machine before, 6 (16.2%) saw it sometimes ago. Only 4(10.8%) respondents can successfully operate the machine. Results on Agarose gel electrophoresis showed that only 28(75.6%) respondents have heard of it before. 9(24.3%) never heard of it before. Among those who heard before, 15(40.5%) became aware via textbooks and class lectures. 22(59.5%) have never seen agarose gel electrophoresis tank. 2(5.45%) recently saw one while 5(17.5%) can successfully operate it. As revealed in this survey rightful and timely exposure of laboratory scientists and technologists in Nigeria and other parts of the world to molecular diagnostic skills will help detection, early prevention and treatment of diseases and infections.