Rapid Detection and Identification of Infectious Agents is a collection of papers presented at the International Symposium on Rapid Detection and Identification of Infectious Agents held on October 5-7, 1983, in Oakland, California, and organized by the Naval Biosciences Laboratory of the School of Public Health of the University of California at Berkeley. Contributors examine progress in the field of rapid diagnosis of infectious diseases, with a particular emphasis on DNA probe-based assays and monoclonal and polyclonal antibody-based immunoassays. This volume is organized into five sections encompassing 20 chapters. It begins with an overview of state-of-the-art methods for rapid detection and identification of infectious agents, including technology that is currently applied in clinical microbiology, as well as concerns regarding the political and scientific climates, which have an impact on health care and clinical microbiology. Chapters are organized to deal with a single diagnostic type of test for a given broad group of organisms. The approach is to compare the strengths and weaknesses of each of the new diagnostic procedures, using the same type of clinical material whenever possible. The book gives consideration to the fundamental design of DNA probes and probe assay systems, the clinical comparison of immunologic assays for the diagnosis of meningococcal disease, and immunodiagnostics for viral and parasitic pathogens. This book will be of value to scientists and researchers interested in immunology and infectious diseases, as well as the methods used to detect and identify them.