Testing groups for identifying group members possessing a trait was initiated by Dorfman (1943), who used it to identify US servicemen infected with syphilis. This method has since been applied to screening of pollutants (Schaeffer, 1982; Rajagopal and Williams,1989), testing for leaking containers (Sobel and Groll, 1959; Thomas et al, 1973), identifying faulty components using a flow test (Hwang, 1984), identifying active users in a communications system (Hayes, 1978; Berger et al, 1984;Wolf, 1985;Garg and Mohan,1987), and so on. Group testing can greatly reduce the required number of tests if the trait is relatively rare (see, for example, Feller, 1968, Garner et al, 1986). The original method of Dorfman has since been modified and this chapter describes all three modifications.
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