Metascreen: A Guard Against Sudden Death

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Metascreen: A Guard Against Sudden Death

In my line of work, I heard many stories about the unexplained and sudden deaths of babies. According from SIDS network, "Nearly one baby every hour each day dies abruptly. An estimated 7,000 babies die each year without warning." (1)

The sudden unexplained deaths occurring in babies is called Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). The possible causes are unknown even after autopsy. It usually occurs while sleeping but some of my colleagues in work thinks if it can be a complication from aspiration too. Victims can be from newborns up to one year old baby and can vary depending on physical and environmental factors.

"Studies have shown that babies with physical conditions including brain abnormalities, low birth weight and respiratory infection have higher risk of dying an unexplained death. 

Still some studies indicated that an infant’s sleeping position may also be a cause. Babies sleeping on their stomach side are more prone as they may suffer more difficulty in breathing. Those sleeping on soft surfaces and with their parents are also at risk. (2)

To address the problem, various newborn screening tests are being employed as a means of identifying inborn disorders. For instance, dried blood spot screening, usually available in hospitals, can effectively screen the newborn of many metabolic disorders. 

This type of screening, however, can only detect less than 50 metabolic disorders. (3)"

Metascreen, a new expanded process of advanced and non-invasive metabolic screening service was developed. It can detect up to more than 100 inborn errors of metablism (IEM) through a painless method that uses the child's urine sample collected after 48 hours of birth.

IEM or Inborn Errors of Metabolism, a rare genetic disorder characterized by the lack of enzymes needed in the body to maintain normal body metabolic temperature. It eventually causes build-up of toxic substances and remains undetected during the infant stages of the baby. It is a silent threat to every newborn. Sudden death can occur and it may also trigger serious developmental issues and lifelong diseases if not treated. 

Research showed that 10% of the SIDS cases can significantly be attributed to these inherited metabolic defects. 

In the Philippines, this comprehensive newborn screening is offered by Cordlife Medical Philippines, the country’s most chosen cord blood and cord lining banking institution. This is offered free to subscribers who will bank their cord blood and cord lining. Metascreen is offered free to all mothers who bank their baby’s cord blood and cord lining at Cordlife.

“Sudden Infant Death Syndrome is a serious and unseen condition that contributes to infant mortality,” said Dr. Arvin Faundo, Medical Director, Cordlife Medical Philippines. “Metascreen offers mothers the chance to reduce this incidence to secure the future and the wellbeing of their newborn.”

The screening test is performed by the Hong Kong Screening Centre Limited, a company that provides early and accurate detection of metabolic disorders in newborn babies. 

“Here in the Philippines, we take pride in providing our clients with the best facilities to ensure that Cordlife is something they can depend on especially when it comes to securing the health of their newborn,” Faundo added. 

Cordlife Medical Philippines, is a branch of Cordlife Group Limited which owns and operates processing and cryopreservation storage facilities across Asia including in Singapore, Hong Kong, India and Indonesia.

The Group’s processing and storage facilities in Singapore, Hong Kong, and India are also AABB, formerly known as American Association of Blood Banks, accredited, meeting the gold standard of private cord blood banking.

Cordlife Group also has a direct investment in China Cord Blood Corporation, one of the top operators in China. 

For more information, download Cordlife’s free infopack @ or call (02) 3321888 to know how you can invest in your children’s future. 


(1) Retrieved from: 

(3) Retrieved from: 

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