A new method detects traces of veterinary drugs in baby food
The quantities are very small, but in milk powder and in meat-based baby food, residues of drugs given to livestock were found. Researchers from the University of Almeria (Spain) have developed a system to analyse these substances quickly and precisely. Antibiotics, such as tilmicosine, or antiparasitic drugs, such as levamisole, are given to livestock in order to avoid illness, but they can remain later in food. Scientists from the University of Almeria (UAL) have confirmed this, whilst checking new methodology to identify the minute quantities of these substances that remain in baby food preparations.
"The concentrations detected have been generally very low. On one hand, this suggests they are not worrying amounts, on the other hand, it shows the need to control these products to guarantee food safety" Antonia Garrido, Professor of Analytical Chemistry at UAL, pointed out.
With this objective, the team has developed a 'multi-residue' method, which allows several drugs to be detected at a time in baby food. Chromatographic techniques are used for this, in order to separate compounds, and mass spectrometry to identify them.
The "precise, simple and fast" methodology has been validated by analysing twelve meat products (cow, pig or poultry) and nine milk powder samples. Data indicate that concentrations of veterinary drugs vary from 0.5 to 25.2 µg/kg in the former and 1.2 to 26.2 µg/kg in the latter "although with more samples, more conclusive results would be obtained."
Higher concentrations in poultry products
Sulfonamides, macrolides and other antibiotic traces have been found, as well as anthelmintics (anti-worm) and fungicides. In total, they found five veterinary drugs in milk powder and ten in meat products, especially if they were chicken or other poultry.
The study that is published in the Food Chemistry journal, suggests that this could be because in some farms there is no thorough control on the administration of drugs to animals.
Until now, the European Commission has regulated the levels of pesticides and other substances in cereal based foods for children and babies, but not in animal based foods. As a result of the lack of regulation, a zero tolerance policy is usually applied to veterinary drugs in food, as they can cause allergic reactions, resistance to antibiotics and other health problems.
Source: Plataforma SINC
- New method detects traces of veterinary drugs in baby foodfrom Science DailySat, 19 May 2012, 7:30:18 EDT
- A new method detects traces of veterinary drugs in baby foodfrom PhysorgFri, 18 May 2012, 10:30:59 EDT
Latest Science NewsletterGet the latest and most popular science news articles of the week in your Inbox! It's free!
Check out our next project, Biology.Net
From other science news sites
Popular science news articles
- Protein in, ammonia out
- Modeling NAFLD with human pluripotent stem cell derived immature hepatocyte like cells
- Study finds potential treatment for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease
- Microbes, nitrogen and plant responses to rising atmospheric carbon dioxide
- A quick and easy new method to detect Wolbachia bacteria in intact Aedes mosquitoes
- Freiburg biologists explain function of Pentagone
- Skype data of 500 million people reveals the real patterns of social adoption
- Rice University lab runs crowd-sourced competition to create 'big data' diagnostic tools
- Jasmonate-deficient tobacco plants attract herbivorous mammals
- Surprising qualities of insulator ring surfaces
- New analysis reveals large-scale motion around San Andreas Fault System
- Twin birth defect risk may be higher among moms not on fertility treatment
- Rapid Medicaid expansion in Michigan didn't reduce access to primary care
- Study finds decrease in uninsured hospital patients, increase in those with Medicaid
- Medicaid expansion brought across-the-board relief for Michigan hospitals, study finds