How much of the assay process can be automated and what steps remain manual even with automation?


As much or as little of the assay process as you desire can be automated. Automated systems designed specifically for ELISA are quite common. The only thing the user would need to do is add the all of the labware needed to the starting positions and fill any reagent reservoirs or carboys, start the protocol and analyze the data when it’s finished. How much of a process end users chose to automate is generally defined by need, expertise and available funding. My lab takes a hybrid approach. We don’t run ELISAs enough to justify a fully automated platform, but do run them in 384-well format. We have 2-384 channel liquid handlers for sample and reagent transfers as well as a plate washer with attached plate stacker. We also have a plate stacker attached to the plate reader. There are some manual intervention steps required, but it is not all manual. We do run a lot of MSD assays and have a fully automated platform for that method.

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