Biologic Variation Approach to Daily Laboratory

Clin Lab Med. 2017 Mar;37(1):47-56. doi: 10.1016/j.cll.2016.09.005. Epub 2016 Dec 13.


Biological variation gives valuable information about how the living organism regulates its constituents within and between subjects; this information on the behavior of body components allows us to derive consequences concerning reference populations and intervals. With a more pragmatic approach biological variation has three uses: setting the appropriate analytical performance specification for each analyte to limit the amount of error that laboratory could introduce in its measurements, to help distinguish health from disease, and to implement internal quality control with the automatic verification of results.

Keywords: Biological variation; Error limits; Quality control; Reference change value.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Body Fluids / chemistry*
  • Body Fluids / physiology
  • Clinical Laboratory Techniques / methods*
  • Diagnostic Errors
  • Humans
  • Laboratories / standards*
  • Quality Control
  • Reference Values