Washington, DC, August 2, 2010 The American Association for Clinical Chemistry (AACC) announces a webinar Antinuclear Antibody Testing: Issues and Answers being held on Wednesday, September 22 at 2:00pm Eastern. The webinar will last 90 minutes.
Between 13 and 20 million Americans are affected by autoimmune disorders. For a number of these disorders, the Antinuclear Antibody (ANA) test is the mainstay for screening and the longtime gold standard of ANA testing has been the immunofluorescence (IF) ANA Assay. This uses cell lines, in particular HEp-2 cells, which contain approximately 100 to 150 autoantigens and can provide both a pattern and a titer to assist in diagnosis. In recent years, however, enzyme immunoassays (EIA) and solid phase multiplex immunoassays have been introduced for ANA screening. These can process specimens more quickly and at less cost than the traditional IF technique. However, they are less sensitive for some conditions because they can detect only specific autoantibodies that are directed against autoantigens included in the assay. Further, the composition of the EIA and multiplex assays varies from as few as 8-12 antigens to a much larger number when extracts from HEp-2 cells and/or chromatin material is included.
The selection of a test to screen patient serum for the presence of antibodies is very controversial and the webinar will provide the perspective of both the laboratory and the rheumatologist on the advantages, or otherwise, of different tests. The faculty will review the key components of each technology, including false positives and negatives, and will discuss strategies to overcome these, and to improve screening, diagnosis, and the communication of test results. The expert faculty for this event is David F. Keren, MD, Medical Director, Warde Medical Laboratory, Ann Arbor, MI, Donald Bloch, MD, Associate Physician, Massachusetts General Hospital and Assistant Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, and John L. Carey, MD, Vice Chair, Clinical Pathology, Henry Ford Hospital, Detroit, MI. The program is supported, in part, by Siemens Healthcare Diagnostics.
AACC invites interested journalists to participate in the webinar at no cost. To register, complete and submit a Press Registration Form. For more information about the webinar or AACC, contact Peter Patterson on either of the above numbers or at firstname.lastname@example.org.