According to the European Commission Directive 2002/86/EC, food ingredients must be declared and in the case of meat products, the specification of the animal species has to be disclosed on the label. Species authenticity can be extremely relevant to consumer for a variety of reasons, including economic, medical and religious reasons. Fraudulent substitution by less expensive meats, inclusion of meat in vegetarian products or the presence of allergens are all issues of major concern.
Several methods for species detection that are available are based on protein identification (by means of electrophoretic and/or immunological methods). However, these methods are not reliable for highly processed and heated products due to protein denaturation and degradation.
As DNA is much more stable, PCR/qPCR amplification of a species-specific target sequence provide a simple, fast and reliable method for the detection of a target species with high sensitivity and specificity, even in the case of highly fragmented DNA.
The Xpert qDetect Sheep Kit is a kit for the detection by qPCR of DNA from Sheep (Ovis aries) present in total DNA previously purified from food samples. This kit is compatible with instruments equipped with FAM and ROX channels. The detection limit is 10-100 pg of Ovine DNA, allowing the detection of as little as 0.1% of target DNA in food samples if 100ng of total DNA (mixed species) is used