Ergot Alkaloids ELISA now available from Randox Food Diagnostics

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Ergot Alkaloids ELISA now available from Randox Food Diagnostics


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28 July 2020

Ergot Alkaloid ELISA now available from Randox Food Diagnostics

Available now, the Randox Food Diagnostics Ergot Alkaloid ELISA (Catalogue Number EA3491) is:

Compliant with the lowest proposed maximum levels being considered by the European Commission for the total of 12 main ergot alkaloids applicable from July 2020, including the stricter drafted limits from July 2022, for cereal-based feed, wheat and rye milling products.

Accurately detects the sum of 12 main ergot alkaloids to test the most affected type of cereal – rye flour. Randox’s ELISA results show an excellent 95% correlation with the assigned concentration within FAPAS Proficiency Test scheme.

Unrivalled in the detection of low contamination levels. The Z-score of FAPAS PT of -0.6 for baby multigrain food was obtained using Randox Ergot Alkaloids ELISA.

Validated based on Commission Regulation (EC) No 519/2014 as a semi-quantitative screening method for cereal-based feed, wheat and rye milling products. The same regulation was followed for fit-for-purpose approach assessment for confirmatory method, which approves Randox Ergot Alkaloids ELISA as being a method for official control. It is successfully assessed by fit-for-purpose approach according to Commission Regulation (EC) No 401/2006 as approved method of analysis.

Evaluated by third-party laboratory (Wageningen Food Safety research / WFSR, 2019) and proved to be able to distinguish between negative and positive samples. Randox’s ELISA displayed no false-negatives and no false-positives in this study. Across all commercially available ELISA tests, Randox Food Diagnostics Ergot Alkaloids ELISA was the only test which showed good performance with all 3 sample types, including 11 matrices and a total of 24 samples.

      Reference reports are available upon request.

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      Over 100 Dairy Cows put down following Ergotism Outbreak in New Zealand

      This week over 100 cows on a farm in New Zealand had to be put down after digesting fungus from an infected feed supply. The herd in the Southland and Otago regions was suffering from ergot toxicity. Randox Food Diagnostics have developed the only test for this fungus on the market, which can protect your animals from injury or death.

      Ergot Alkaloids are a naturally occurring fungus most commonly found in grains and grasses. Produced by a group of fungi called the Claviceps species, they infect seed heads of plants during the flowering period. The fungus replaces the developing grain with toxic ergot. The dry summer and wet autumn this year provided the optimum growing conditions for the fungus.

      Typically, it causes lameness and swelling of the fetlocks and hock joints but in the most severe cases animals can lose tips of their tails, or ears or even their hooves. As in this case, it can result in animals being put down.

      While all animals are at risk of contracting ergot, it is most commonly found in cattle.

      According to the report, VetSouth Winton veterinarian Hayden Dore confirmed four cases have been reported in Southland and South Otago with a large number of infected cows.

      “Over time it effectively causes one or more of the limbs to become gangrenous. Signs of ergot toxicity generally start with a disinterest in feed, before moving to lameness in the limbs, which presented similarly to foot rot, but without the separation of the toes. Once the limbs go cold from lack of blood supply, it would take about a week before the limbs began to fall off,” he said.

      “One herd with 900 milking cows had around 130 cows infected by the poisonous fungus, with subsequently 61 of them being put down.”

      Testing for Ergot Alkaloids

      Randox Food Diagnostics offer the only array on the market to test for Ergot Alkaloids. Validated for flour and seed, the ELISA test offers excellent limits of detection for the toxin Ergotamine at 1ppb.

      Click here for more information on the Ergot Alkaloid ELISA kit or email and your area’s Business Development Executive will contact you.

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