• The endocrinology section originates from the National Workgroup for Binding Analysis.
  • The section organises about 6 schemes annually.
  • Traditionally these entail the measurement of analytes with the assistance of binding analysis. This means that the scope of the section reaches beyond pure endocrinological laboratory diagnostics: among others, a number of vitamin and tumour markers also fall within the competency of the section. With the introduction of analysis methods with increasingly broader applications for endocrinological laboratory diagnostics the section endeavours to incorporate them with regard to both content and execution. An example of this is mass spectrometry.
  • The section is made up of a general and executive board. Annually the schemes are discussed in 6 central meetings and possible actions are formulated.

Scheme plan 

  • The 6 schemes each consist of 4 samples (A, B, C and D).
  • We endeavour to send out a high and a low sample (A and B). The measurement materials may or may not be added to these samples. Based upon measurement differences, in the case of an additive, a recovery can be calculated.
  • Samples C and D are reserved for tumour markers (2 levels).
  • Extensive consideration is given to commutability.
  • There are two questionnaire options offered: the external QC and a combi-questionnaire (which also incorporates the internal QC) .
  • The results obtained by the participants are submitted for processing using QBase (an SKML programme).
  • Often a “golden standard” is unavailable and in these cases the starting point used is the mean value obtained by the participants (this may or may not be in groups).
  • The schemes endeavour to use reference methods which may or may not be carried out in reference laboratories.
  • An annual report is generated every year in which the peculiarities per analyte, lab and method are presented based upon a yearly average.


The intentions of the schemes include

  • Gaining insight into the effect of method differences on measurement results.
  • Gaining insight into the spread.
  • Striving towards harmonisation and standardisation.

In addition to this inventorial role, activities are developed within the section which will provide some substance to the objectives.

  • Thereby one may consider the annual plenary meeting which is thematic in nature. The input is notably field-related.
  • In addition an attempt is being made to actively stimulate harmonisation, whereby the distribution of the hGH harmonisation sample is a good example.
  • The section also includes in its functions the establishment, implentation and interpretation of twin studies, intended to provide insight into method performance and commutability.
  •  Finally, the section would like to be a sparring partner in the case of problems with determinations in the participant’s laboratory.
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