By Allergen Bureau

AOAC International gives ‘thumbs up’ to mass-spec allergen screening method

Global life science analytic company SCIEX has announced that its mass spectroscopy method for analszing food allergens has received the First Action Official Method (FAOM) classification from AOAC International’s Official Methods Board.

The method is said to provide far greater confidence when detecting allergens in complex food samples compared with immunoassay-based and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) methods. In media releases associated with the announcement, SCIEX states that traditional methods such as ELISA and PCR for allergen analysis come with several challenges, including detection accuracy in processed products and the cost of testing for several allergens in the same sample.

The method uses liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) to analyse a range of food products (both raw and baked goods) by detecting several unique signature peptides that are specific to each allergen.

It is reported to detect allergenic peptides from five of the major classes of allergenic foods at a detection limit of 10 ppm in a variety of food matrices. With increased throughput, the ability to identify multiple key allergens at once from a number of different food types, and advanced peptide signature detection, SCIEX report a greatly reduced chance of both false negative and false positive results.

Following the FOAM classification, AOAC International will initiate a two-year assessment of the SCIEX method. If the method’s performance satisfies the review panels, the AOAC will make a recommendation to the Official Methods Board for a Final Action Method status.

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