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Beta hCG

Human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) is a glycoprotein hormone secreted in pregnancy, that is made by the embryo soon after conception and later by the syncytiotrophoblast (part of the placenta). Its role is to prevent the disintegration of the corpus luteum of the ovary and thereby maintain progesterone production that is critical for a pregnancy in humans. hCG may have additional functions, for instance it is thought that it affects the immune tolerance of the pregnancy.

Pregnancy tests measure the levels of hCG in the blood or urine to indicate the presence or absence of an implanted embryo. In particular, pregnancy tests employ an antibody that is specific to the Beta-subunit of hCG (BetahCG). This is important so that tests do not make false positives by confusing hCG with LH and FSH. BetahCG is also secreted by some cancers including teratomas, choriocarcinomas. But, elevated levels cannot prove the presence of a tumor, and low levels do not rule it out.

Beta hcG ELISA:

Immunoenzymatic colorimetric method (ELISA) for quantitative determination of Beta-hCG in serum or plasma.

Principle of the Assay:

The beta-hCG assay is based on simultaneous binding of human beta-hCG to two monoclonal antibodies; one is immobilized on the microplate, the other is soluble and conjugated with horseradish peroxidase (HRP). Microtiter strip wells are precoated with anti-beta-hCG IgG antibodies. Beta-hCG in samples and standards binds to the immobilised antibodies on the surface of the microtiter wells and the second, soluble anti-beta-hCG antibody-enzyme conjugate binds to the immobile antibody-beta-hCG-complex during the first incubation. Afterwards a washing step is performed.

The immune complex is visualized by adding Tetramethylbenzidine (TMB) substrate, which gives a blue reaction product. The intensity of this product is proportional to the amount of beta-hCG in samples and standards. Sulphuric acid is added to stop the reaction. This produces a yellow endpoint colour. Absorption at 450 nm is read using an ELISA microwell plate reader.

Specific performance characteristics:




Analytic Sensitivity







Beta hCG




98.4% ± 5%

The NovaTec beta-hCG ELISA was compared to another commercially available beta-hCG assay. Serum samples of 50 females were analysed according in both test systems.
The linear regression curve was calculated:
r = 0.96

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Beta hCG





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Beta hCG