- ELISA (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay) is a plate-based assay technique designed for detecting and quantifying substances such as peptides, proteins, antibodies and hormones.
- Other names, such as enzyme immunoassay (EIA), are also used to describe the same technology.
- In an ELISA, an antigen must be immobilized on a solid surface and then complexed with an antibody that is linked to an enzyme.
- Detection is accomplished by assessing the conjugated enzyme activity via incubation with a substrate to produce a measureable product. The most crucial element of the detection strategy is a highly specific antibody-antigen interaction.
- Because the ELISA can be performed to evaluate either the presence of antigen or the presence of antibody in a sample, it is a useful tool for determining serum antibody concentrations (such as with the HIV test or West Nile virus).
- It has also found applications in the food industry in detecting potential food allergens, such as milk, peanuts, walnuts, almonds, and eggs and as serological blood test for coeliac disease.
- ELISA can also be used in toxicology as a rapid presumptive screen for certain classes of drugs.
- Dr Dennis E Bidwell and Alister Voller created the ELISA test to detect various kind of diseases, such as dengue, malaria, Chagas disease, Johne’s disease, and others.
- ELISA tests also are used as in in vitro diagnostics in medical laboratories.
The other uses of ELISA include:
- detection of Mycobacterium antibodies in tuberculosis
- detection of rotavirus in faeces
- detection of hepatitis B markers in serum
- detection of enterotoxin of E. coli in faeces
- detection of HIV antibodies in blood samples