Good science assists diagnosis
Diagnosis of infectious diseases is an imperfect science. The emergence of new diseases and the variable responses of individuals to infection present constant challenges to public health and medicine. Laboratory testing is a vital part of the diagnostic process, contributing objective results which complement clinical findings to help establish the cause of disease.
Our ELISA technologies rely on well-defined antigenic targets, including a 26 amino-acid peptide for Lyme disease, the “C6 peptide”, and a recombinant protein for Anthrax, the “Protective Antigen”. The high sensitivity and specificity of our tests is a product of careful antigen selection based on extensive research, combined with our proprietary immunoassay chemistries. To develop a test, highly antigenic components of an infectious organism are identified and reproduced synthetically through molecular biology techniques. The synthetic antigens are then used to develop and manufacture diagnostic assays in ELISA and other immunoassay formats.
A new generation of ELISAs based on defined antigens is now replacing the earlier generation of tests using cellular components. The benefits include:
- Improved immunologic specificity
- Reduced false positive rates due to absence of cross reactivity with other infections
- Increased sensitivity due to better recognition of the antigen by antibodies
- More reproducible and consistent tests
Immunetics has also developed highly accurate Western Blot tests for HIV and Cysticercosis. These tests have been licensed from the NIH as proven confirmatory methods that complement rapid screening tests for these infections.