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Section 2: Understanding The Enzyme-linked Immunosorbent Assay Types

Immunoassays are biochemical tests that are used to measure the concentration of an analyte in a solution. They were first invented in the 1950s, and improved upon in the 1960s. They come in a variety of formats.

The enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (or ELISA as it is more commonly known) was developed in the 1970s and took the place of the radioimmunoassay technique that had been commonly used up until that time. ELISA is typically used as a diagnostic tool by hospitals, clinics and medical laboratories. Various commercial industries also use it as a quality control check method and food industries use it to detect the presence of potential allergens in commercial food products.

The Advantages of ELISA

ELISA sensitivity is higher than that of other immunoassays. What is more, ELISA can provide quantitative results that can enable a doctor, laboratory technician or company manager to see clearly exactly how much of a particular analyte is present in any given solution.

The ELISA testing technique is also quick, as it has been specifically designed to handle a large quantity of samples simultaneously. They are also simple, enabling companies to easily train workers in how to carry out these tests and handle the results from them.

ELISA Test Types

There are three primary ELISA testing methodologies. These are Direct ELISA, Sandwich ELISA and Competitive ELISA. Direct ELISA tests can be run in either a quantitative format or a qualitative one. Qualitative results are listed as either "yes" or "no" while quantitative results compare the optical density of the sample in question to a standard curve. Sandwich ELISA tests detect sample antigen while Competitive ELISA tests are used to detect the presence of the HIV virus and use a slightly different methodology than the ELISA testing methods mentioned above.

The enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay testing method has much to offer. It helps doctors diagnose and treat medical conditions, is used by anti-doping agencies to ensure that athletes are not taking illegal drugs and enables companies to product allergen-free food items for those who need them. ELISA is quick, efficient, and sensitive and offers various testing options to suit the needs of any medical or industry professional.
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Introduction ↢ Section 1 - Section 2 -
rightarrow An Introduction to ELISA
    - Brief introduction to basic procedures, different types of ELISA tests...
rightarrow Overview Of The Basic ELISA Procedure
    - ELISA procedures, features, benefits, improvements...
rightarrow Understanding The ELISA Assay Types
    - ELISA's advantages, Direct, Sandwich, Competitive ELISA...
Section 3 ↣ Section 4 Section 5
rightarrow Defining ELISA Detection Options
    - The two ELISA detection options: Direct and Indirect...
rightarrow ELISA Results
    - Testing Data: Quantitative, Qualitative, Semi-quantitative...
rightarrow Information On ELISA And ELISA Sensitivity
    - ELISA: The most sensitive immunoassays available...
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