With reference to the article by Rebecca Krumm in the May 16, 1994, issue of The Scientist on radioimmunoassays [page 17]: A possible quantitative measure of the current use of radioimmunoassay (RIA) might be the data prepared by the Institute for Scientific Information on the number of references, over the years, to "preparation of iodine-131- labeled human growth hormone of high specific activity."

This was a preliminary report of the method published by W.M. Hunter and F.C. Greenwood in Nature, 914:495-6, 1962. This report and the full report, published by F.C. Greenwood, Hunter, and S. Glover, Biochemical Journal, 89:114-23, 1963, were both named Citation Classics. In Current Contents No. 26, June 26, 1989, page 16, I tried to explain the apparent paradox in an article entitled "Longevity of immunochemical methods that work."

I spent much of my scientific life in England looking at hormone levels, first in urine and then...

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