This report describes the development of a solid-phase haemadsorption system using chromic chloride-linked, antibody coated erythrocytes. It is proposed to call this technique solid phase aggregation of coupled erythrocytes (SPACE). The system is suitable for the detection of virus antigens, such as from rotavirus infections, which are present in ‘dirty’ or ‘mixed’ preparations such as faeces, urine or exudates. The test uses microtitre U-form plates coated with specific antivirus antibody; faecal suspensions are added and virus or antigen allowed to adsorb. The plates are then washed and adsorbed antigens are detected by the addition of virus-specific IgG-coated erythrocytes. The resultant settling pattern is read in the same manner as a conventional haemagglutination test. The system is compared with electron microscopy and fluorescent antibody techniques.


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