Immunoassays are biochemical tests designed to determine the presence and concentration of a particular micro or macro molecule or chemical, often in a solution such as serum, plasma or cell culture fluid with antibody or antigen reagents.
Antibodies are Y-shaped proteins formed by human and animal immune functions reacting to unknown substances (antigens) like viruses, toxins, and bacteria. Antibodies respond to specific antigens, tying spots on the antigen and antibody acting as a lock and key. With the help of reagents, immunoassays use the relation between antibodies and antigens to point out specific atoms in a solution. Antigens in immunoassays are called analytes.
Reagents help you maximize the results of your immunoassay. Also, reagents like protein stabilizers help steady the antibody or antigen to the surface with time while preventing impediments that may affect the authenticity of your immunoassay tests. Immunoassay reagent bring stability, consistency, and sensitivity to help you achieve your optimal degree of detection.
Benefits Of Immunoassay Reagents
Immunoassay reagent tests are extensively used thanks to their many benefits. Here are a few benefits of using immunoassay tests.
- They Are Easily Portable
All necessary supplies and reagents come in two or three packages, easily transportable to the lab or site in a van or car trunk. Most tests can be carried out on a small counter or table. You don’t need electrical energy except when using a spectrophotometer or photometer.
- They Are Easy To Use
If you’re a beginner, you can learn how to use immunoassay reagents or test kits in a day or less. Most people can become proficient at using immunoassay reagents and test kits once they’ve analyzed just two or three sets of samples. The reagents are developed purposely for uncomplicated processes, but a chemistry or environmental science background can be helpful.
They are also employed in a spectrum of applications and compounds and can detect small degrees of molecules.
- The Produce Real-time Results
Depending on the prevailing conditions, the production capacity of as high as 40 to 70 samples per day is achievable with immunoassay reagents. Hardly any sample preparation is mandatory for water samples. Therefore, you can produce data while fieldwork is ongoing, thus decreasing the possibility of requiring expensive remobilization to another location.
- They Are Low-Cost
The typical expenditure of a test procedure can range from USD$10 to USD$25 for every water sample and USD$20 to USD$50 per soil sample, including labor charges. Due to the expenses of renting equipment and labor, the cost for each sample decreases as the number of samples adds up.
Applications Of Immunoassay Reagents
Immunoassay tests are simple to carry out, and as such, they are commonly used. Here are some universal immunoassay tests applications.
- Clinical Diagnostics And Drug Monitoring
One of the areas in which immunoassays are vital is infection diagnostics and treatment. For example, immunoassay reagents are used in pregnancy tests, cancer diagnostics, and curative drug monitoring. It’s bioanalytical tests that scrutinize the reaction to pharmaceutical medicine treatments for conditions like cancer and HIV. For instance, the HIV test is an immunoassay used to detect the presence of HIV antibodies in a person’s blood, indicating that they have an infection with the virus. You can also use immunoassay reagents in the place of work for drug testing.
Immunoassay tests play an active role in the diagnosis of conditions or diseases. They detect disease-specific antibodies or antigens in a person’s blood or other body fluids. Here are some typical clinical diagnostic applications:
- They diagnose and control infectious diseases like hepatitis, tuberculosis, and HIV.
- They screen and monitor autoimmune disorders, like rheumatoid arthritis and lupus.
- Immunoassay reagents also test and monitor substance abuse, particularly marijuana, opioids and alcohol.
- They examine the levels of specific medicines, such as blood thinners and insulin.
- They identify and determine allergens both in environment and food samples.
- Immunoassay reagents are used to test and monitor fertility and pregnancy hormone levels.
- Immunoassays detect and assess contaminants in the environment, such as pesticides and heavy metals.
- They evaluate the functions of the immune system and its vaccine response.
- Immunoassay tests detect and assess hormones and similar biomarkers for clinical and research studies.
- They present an immediate and exact diagnostic for tests in clinics, hospitals, and other health facilities.
With the help of immunoassay reagents, the tests help healthcare professionals diagnose and keep an eye on an extensive array of conditions, like autoimmune disorders, infections, and cancers.
- Biopharmaceutical Analysis
Biopharmaceutical medicines have been mined, synthesized and manufactured in or from a biological resource. Immunoassays and their reagents serve as valuable tools for biopharmaceutical development and research, gene and cell therapy, and clinical trials for vaccines.
- Food Testing
Immunoassays are crucial in the food industry and are commonly used in development and production. They detect the presence of food-borne pathogens, hazardous allergens or contaminants such as salmonella. Immunoassay tests can also detect toxic chemicals, heavy metal contamination, gluten, or pathogens like E. coli.
This is vital for ensuring that supplied foodstuffs are safe, which ultimately prevent outbreaks or cases of food poisoning. Furthermore, immunoassays reagents help identify the existence of allergens, such as milk and peanuts, in food products to make sure that people with allergies are safe from potentially risky situations.
- Environmental Monitoring
In recent times, immunoassays have been used in environmental monitoring. Immunoassay technology is utilized to detect toxins or pollutants in soils, water or air samples. For instance, immunoassays reagents test for particular polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), pesticides, and other toxic elements in ground and surface water.
This is significant in protecting public health and evaluating the well-being of our environment. These assays help spot heavy metals, such as mercury and lead, in water tests to guarantee that they meet the required safety standards.
Generally, there are different immunoassay reagents and procedures available for your preferred application. Tremendous advancements have been made over the years in the industry of immunoassay application that yields more benefits to users. The improvements in healthcare immunoassays are mainly influenced by the interdisciplinary nature of the reagents and their applications. Advancements have also boosted healthcare professionals and the industry at large. High-quality reagents are used to formulate powerful immunoassays efficiently, cost-effectively and quickly.