Immunoelectron Microscopy of Plant Viruses and Mycoplasma

  • Yogesh C. Paliwal
Part of the Current Topics in Vector Research book series (VECTOR, volume 3)


Immunoelectron microscopy (IEM) is a general term that covers a group of techniques that utilize the specificity of an antigen—antibody reaction in electron microscopic investigations of biological specimens. More specifically, IEM may be defined as electron microscope (EM) viewing of an immunological reaction where antigen in a liquid suspension or in situ is allowed to react with antibody followed by certain treatments of the adduct to obtain specific qualitative or quantitative information. Although IEM was first introduced to plant viruses by Anderson and Stanley (3), Ball and Brakke (4) provided the first IEM procedure, named “leaf dip serology,” as an improvement over negative staining for plant virus studies. In this classical IEM method, a purified virus preparation, sap from fresh leaf cuts, or a crushed piece of infected leaf is mixed with a suitable dilution of homologous antiserum. After incubation the preparation is viewed in the EM to detect virus particles in the form of clumps; hence the method has also been known as “clumping” (66). Because of the problems of nonspecific clumping observed under some conditions and unreliability in cases of antibody excess or low virus concentrations, this method is not commonly used now.


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© Springer-Verlag New York Inc. 1978

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yogesh C. Paliwal
    • 1
  1. 1.Chemistry and Biology Research InstituteAgriculture CanadaOttawaCanada

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