Validation of the Charm MRL-3 for fast screening of beta-lactam antibiotics in raw milk

Wim Reybroeck, Sigrid Ooghe, Hubert F De Brabander, Els Daeseleire
Journal of AOAC International 2011, 94 (2): 373-82
The biochemicals utilized in the Charm MRL beta-Lactam test (8 min test) were applied to faster flowing lateral components to create a new 3 min, one-step beta-lactam test called Charm MRL-3 (Charm Sciences Inc., Lawrence, MA). This new test was validated at T&V-ILVO according to Commission Decision 2002/657/EC. The following analytical parameters were checked: test specificity, detection capability, and test robustness (impact of deviation of the test protocol, and impact of the milk composition, batch differences of reagents). Further, the suitability of the Charm MRL-3 to screen heat-treated milk or milk from animal species other than the cow was also tested. Finally, the test was integrated in the monitoring of dairy samples to check the occurrence of false-negative or false-positive results, and the test was also included in a national ring trial and an international proficiency study. The results proved that the Charm MRL-3 is a fast, simple, and reliable cows' milk test that can be used at the farm level in order to prevent tanker milk contamination, or at the entrance of the dairy plant to screen tanker milk for the presence of beta-lactam antibiotics.

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