Application of 3D Printing Technology in Increasing the Diagnostic Performance of Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA) for Infectious Diseases

Sensors (Basel). 2015 Jul 8;15(7):16503-15. doi: 10.3390/s150716503.


Enzyme-linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA)-based diagnosis is the mainstay for measuring antibody response in infectious diseases and to support pathogen identification of potential use in infectious disease outbreaks and clinical care of individual patients. The development of laboratory diagnostics using readily available 3D printing technologies provides a timely opportunity for further expansion of this technology into immunodetection systems. Utilizing available 3D printing platforms, a '3D well' was designed and developed to have an increased surface area compared to those of 96-well plates. The ease and rapidity of the development of the 3D well prototype provided an opportunity for its rapid validation through the diagnostic performance of ELISA in infectious disease without modifying current laboratory practices for ELISA. The improved sensitivity of the 3D well of up to 2.25-fold higher compared to the 96-well ELISA provides a potential for the expansion of this technology towards miniaturization and Lab-On-a-Chip platforms to reduce time, volume of reagents and samples needed for such assays in the laboratory diagnosis of infectious and other diseases including applications in other disciplines.

Keywords: 3D printing; ELISA; infectious diseases; rapid diagnostics.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Communicable Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Communicable Diseases / immunology
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay / standards*
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin G / analysis
  • Printing, Three-Dimensional*
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Surface Properties


  • Immunoglobulin G