Serological identification of the species origin of animal meats
Antisera to bovine, sheep and horse serum albumins were raised in rabbits and purified by immunoadsorbent chromatography. The antigenic properties of the purified and unpurified sera were investigated using the double immunodiffusion test. This showed that the purification step enabled exclusive species identification to be made using the anti-BSA and -HSA specific fractions but not with the anti-SSA fraction isolated by the same purifi8ation procedure. Identification of the species of origin of meat by the ELISA method using the specific antibody fractions (anti-BSA and -HSA) showed that beef Could be differentiated ftom horse, sheep and veal meats, and horse from sheep and beef at high levels of significance (P<= 0.001). Sheep was differentiated from horse, beef and venisor at lower levels of significance but not from goat when anti-SSA specific fraction was used. Horse meat in beef mince was differentiated from pure beef mince at levels between 10 and 50: of adulteration , and this limit could be extended to 0.5; adulteration but only in mixtureof separately prepared beef and horse meat extracts. Precise quantification of the amount of horse meat in beef mince from preconstructed standard curves using either the indirect ELISA method or the competitive antigen modification of indirect ELISA was not possible.