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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Ruben Mestril, PhD (Loyola University Medical Center)
Description: This is a compilation of 14 chapters on different aspects of the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) with a final chapter that provides a series of test questions. The book contains detailed instructions and extensive illustrations with many practical examples on the technique permitting even investigators not familiar with the technique to learn all the basic concepts and practical experimental details needed to understand and apply ELISA methodology successfully in basic and clinical research.
Purpose: The ELISA is still one of the predominant assays used in biomedical research. Although not much has changed concerning the principles used in an ELISA, there have been many technological advances since the first edition of this guidebook. There are a number of new and better instruments to measure the final products of an ELISA. In addition, there are an increasing number of different reagents available to visualize the results of the assay. Although there are other testing technologies using molecular techniques, such as RT-PCR, that are able to detect and identify agents present in only minute amounts, the ELISA is still required for large screenings, or even in conjunction with other molecular techniques.
Audience: The book is written mainly for molecular and cellular biologists, biochemists, pharmaceutical scientists, immunologists, pathologists, laboratory medicine researchers, and all researchers using biochemical assays. The guidebook provides practical instructions that will be useful to all investigators engaged in either basic or clinical research.
Features: The guidebook provides clear instructions on how to develop any type of ELISA according to the investigator's needs. Among the most interesting features is chapter 12 on the more advanced statistical methods for quality assurance, test validation, and interpretation. This chapter examines the different statistical factors involved in assessing the validity of the results obtained by using an ELISA approach. Also of interest is chapter 15 that provides a series of test questions covering the material presented in the first 14 chapters. This permits the use of the guidebook as a textbook for a course on ELISA methodology.
Assessment: This volume of Methods in Molecular Biology is an excellent manual for the understanding and development of the ELISA. The guidebook covers all the relevant points necessary for investigators to develop a useful ELISA for their particular needs. This second edition should prove to be a valuable companion for all researchers in the field of basic and clinical research.