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Bioactivity-based screening methods for antibiotics residues: a comparative study of commercial and in-house developed kits

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Two bioactivity-based screening methods for antibiotic residue analysis (FAST Antimicrobial Screening Test and Premi®Test) were compared, in terms of sensitivity, with a new in-house developed tube test assay using Escherichia coli. Tests were performed using antibiotic standards, spiked samples and real incurred samples. The minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) for several antibiotics was established and compared with maximum residue levels (MRLs) in samples. The results of all evaluated tests are compared with liquid chromatography–tandem mass spectrometry multi-residue screening tests to compare parameters such as sample preparation, cost, time of analysis and confidence in results. For all tests, values of half the maximum residue limit (0.5 × MRL) were considered as a satisfactory target for a screening method. The potential and limitations of each method are discussed to indicate more rational and effective strategies for high-throughput residue monitoring and surveillance programmes. It was concluded that bioactivity-based screening methods are a useful tool, but the best compromise between minimum performance limits, cost and selectivity must be taken into account. For laboratories equipped with mass spectrometry, multi-class screening methods provide more specific responses with high sensitivity.
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Keywords: animal products, meat; bioassay; in-house validation; microbiology; veterinary drug residues, antibiotics

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Ministério da Agricultura, Pecuária e Abastecimento, Laboratório Nacional Agropecuário – LANAGRO/RS, Estrada da Ponta Grossa, 3036, CEP 91780-580, Porto Alegre,RS, Brazil

Publication date: April 1, 2012

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