A food safety control low mass-range proteomics platform for the detection of illicit treatments in veal calves by MALDI-TOF-MS serum profiling

Lorenza Della Donna, Maurizio Ronci, Paolo Sacchetta, Carmine Di Ilio, Bartolomeo Biolatti, Giorgio Federici, Carlo Nebbia, Andrea Urbani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Performance enhancing agents (PEAs) are illegally used in cattle and other meat producing species to increase food conversion and lean meat production. Due to the very short breeding cycle, veal calves represent the meat producing bovine category mostly subjected to illicit treatments. These chemical agents are difficult to detect by conventional analytical approaches due to the employment of synergistic formulations at very low dosage and given the use of uncharacterized novel compounds. Such a scenario has fostered a strong interest in the discovery of functional molecular biomarkers for the detection of growth promoting agents in meat producing species. A multivariate MALDI-TOF-MS proteomics platform has been developed using bovine serum samples. Analytical performances have been thoroughly evaluated in order to enable reproducible profiles from 10 μL sera samples. We propose univariate and multivariate discrimination models capable to identify calves undergoing illicit treatments. In particular, we found a strong discrimination power associated with a polypeptide fragment from β2-glycoprotein-I. We provide a fundamental proof of concept in the potential application of MALDI-TOF-MS proteomics profiling in the food safety control.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1596-1609
Number of pages14
JournalBiotechnology Journal
Volume4
Issue number11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2009

Keywords

  • Biomarker
  • Food safety
  • Growth promoting agents
  • Mass spectrometry
  • Proteomics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Molecular Medicine

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