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Table 4 Performance of various tests used for detection of specific antibodies

From: Antinuclear antibodies and their detection methods in diagnosis of connective tissue diseases: a journey revisited

Method Advantages Disadvantages
IF-ANA Cost effective
Easy to perform
High sensitivity and specificity
Time consuming
Can give false positive results
ENA categorization difficult
Requires trained personnel
ELISA Automated
Potential for quantification
High sensitivity
Potential for antibody class definition
Potential for false positives
Expensive
Requires purified antigen
DID Cost effective
High specificity
Detects multiple antibodies at a time
Low sensitivity
Subjective interpretation
Need for large volumes of prototype sera
CIE Cost effective
High specificity
Detects multiple antibodies at a time
Faster than double diffusion
Modest sensitivity
Subjective interpretation
Need for large volumes of prototype sera
PHA Semiquantitative
High specificity
Time consuming
Needs purified antigen
Western blot More sensitive than DID and CIE
High specificity
Expensive
Time consuming
Detects linear epitopes only
Dot/Line blot Easy to perform, rapid
High sensitivity and specificity
Automation possible
Qualitative
Distinction between certain antibodies difficult
MIA Detects multiple antibodies at a time
Quantitation possible
Expensive
Flowcytometry Cost effective
Automated
High sensitivity
Provides single result at a time
Microarray Detects multiple antibodies at a time
Complete automation possible
High sensitivity and specificity
Cost effective
Not widely available