The special story behind the the DCL
The history of the German Chronic Disease Laboratory (DCL) is quite unique. Unlike many other laboratories, it was not founded by physicians, scientists or a group of investors. The DCL is privately run, set up by patients who were tired of pinning their hopes to unreliable test procedures. Marco Haase and Ralf Baberski, the laboratory's founders, have been friends since their youth. Both have Lyme disease. They know what it feels like to live with health problems and pain day in, day out. They have experienced how hard it is to go from doctor to doctor but to have to wait months or even years to find out what's actually causing their problems.
Being affected by Lyme disease led to reasearch about tests and treatment methods
"Through countless visits to doctors, extensive research and talks with experts, we acquired more and more knowledge about Lyme disease, its symptoms, tests and treatment methods," says Marco Haase.
They experienced how Lyme disease tests came back negative although it subsequently turned out that they were infected. They also learnt that there are tests which are more accurate than those performed by most laboratories. "As large laboratories cover the whole spectrum of blood tests and are restricted by the state health insurance companies, they cannot perform intensive, detailed analyses for Lyme disease," explains Haase, who is now the laboratory's managing director.
They wanted to counteract the uncertainty about the results of the Lyme disease test
Haase and Baberski wanted to counteract this uncertainty about the results of the Lyme disease test and remedy this unsatisfactory situation. This is why they decided to take matters into their own hands. As they were already in intensive contact with experienced physicians and microbiologists, the step to their own laboratory was only a short one.
In 2011, the German Chronic Disease Laboratory started work in Blankenburg, Saxony-Anhalt. Thanks to the intensive blood screening provided by the B16+ test, hundreds of tests have now been performed and hundreds of patients have finally received a firm diagnosis.