Highly Sensitive Test for Trichinellosis in Pigs now available

ZURICH - Prionics, a world leader in farm animal diagnostics, has introduced a highly sensitive and specific test for the detection of Trichinella spp. in pigs. The disease, among the most significant parasitic zoonoses in the world, can cause severe illness in humans and new surveillance programs are under review within the European Union.
calendar icon 11 July 2007
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Through its superior sensitivity Prionics' PrioCHECK(R) Trichinella Ab test enables cost efficient testing to improve the monitoring of pigs for this disease, says the company. The ELISA assay detects antibodies in serum and meat juice samples of infected pigs with larval loads as low as 0.02 larvae/g.

The current method of routinely performing post-slaughter testing of each carcass at the slaughterhouse by artificial digestion is costly and relatively insensitive.

The new PrioCHECK(R) test has been shown to be more reliable and highly sensitive as well as specific for the detection of antibodies in serum and meat juice samples. It also shows no cross-reactivity with other commonly found pig parasites such as Ascaris, Trichuris, Hyostrongylus, or Strongyloides.

Cutting testing costs

Within the European Union (EU), the total cost of carcass testing of pigs for Trichinellosis in domestic pigs at slaughter is approximately EUR 500 Million annually. Consequently, reducing testing costs, while at the same time increasing the sensitivity of Trichinella detection through an alternative risk-based surveillance system, is being viewed as a favourable option.

Experts believe that the cost of carcass testing could be drastically reduced by implementing risk-based monitoring programs, where regular testing of blood or meat juice samples of only a random sample of pigs would need to be carried out. A similar system is used in monitoring and controling salmonella levels.

The new PrioCHECK(R) Trichinella Ab test suits this kind of diagnostic technique. It is s faster, more sensitive, and less laborious than currently used methods, says Prionics. Overall, this innovative new test will contribute to improving farm management techniques and hygiene while reducing costs for the monitoring of pig herds.

As the world leader in the BSE business, Prionics has today succeeded in broadening its focus to other major farm animal diseases which can cause massive commercial losses for food producers and that are potentially transferable to humans. Prionics recognises the potential for establishing diagnostic tests for the early detection of diseases in the food chain and offers solutions which contribute to increased food safety.

For further information regarding Trichinellosis, please click here

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