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Title: Tests for detection of snake venoms, toxins and venom antibodies: Review on recent trends (1987-1997)
Authors: Selvanayagam, Z.E.
Gopalakrishnakone, P. 
Issue Date: 1999
Citation: Selvanayagam, Z.E., Gopalakrishnakone, P. (1999). Tests for detection of snake venoms, toxins and venom antibodies: Review on recent trends (1987-1997). Toxicon 37 (4) : 565-586. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: Various methods developed for the detection of snake venoms, toxins and venom antibodies, during the last decade is reviewed. Radioimmunoassay, agglutination assay, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), fluorescence immunoassay etc. have been used for detection of venoms and toxins. Important contributions have been made to improve the specificity, sensitivity, rapidity and simplicity of the ELISA method. Monoclonal antibodies and affinity-purified venom-specific antibodies were used to achieve species specificity of ELISA and the latter seems to be the ideal for venom detection. Incorporation of avidin-biotin system as well as the fluorogenic substrate in the enzyme immunoassay sufficiently increased the sensitivity of the assay to detect venom concentrations to picogram levels. The ability to use undiluted blood and other whole biological fluids reduce the assay time considerably. Although there have been several reports were on venom detection, so far only a few field kits have been developed. This implies that the experiments and design were only at the laboratory levels and still more work has to be carried out before it could be used in the field. Concerning the venom antibody detection, ELISA has been used extensively and the humoral response of patients envenomed by snake has been investigated in detail. Non-specific reactivity along with cross-reactivity still limits the use of ELISA for species identification in epidemiological studies. Overall, ELISA remains the suitable method for the detection of snake venoms, toxins and venom antibodies in body fluids. The possible use of a biosensor approach to solve some of the problems associated with the ELISA method are also discussed.
Source Title: Toxicon
ISSN: 00410101
DOI: 10.1016/S0041-0101(98)00203-7
Appears in Collections:Staff Publications

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