Biacore is the world leader in the detection and monitoring of biomolecular interactions using its surface plasmon resonance (SPR) technology. The company develops, manufactures and markets advanced bioanalytical systems that provide real-time quantitative data on binding interactions between biomolecules.
Within the Food Industry, SPR technology has a growing reputation in areas of food safety and quality assurance finding application in concentration analysis for process chemicals, e.g. vitamin fortification, and in the detection of chemical contaminants, e.g. veterinary drug residues.
Vitamins are added as supplement to a variety of foodstuffs to improve nutritional value. Their addition to certain cereal products is a mandatory requirement in several countries. The concentration of vitamins is determined in the quality and production steps during food processing, as a part of legislative control of fortification. Food companies need to gain accurate data on the concentration of vitamins added as supplement, not only meet consumer requirements for labelling, but also to closely control vitamin dosage in production to minimize wastage.
Biacore has currently five kits for determination of water-soluble vitamins: Qflex Kit Biotin, Qflex Kit Folic Acid, Qflex Kit Vitamin B12, Qflex Kit Vitamin B2 and Qflex Kit Pantothenic acid.
Biacore Qflex Kit Folic Acid is internationally validated and certified by the AOAC (Association of Analytical Communities) Research Institute as a Performance Tested MethodSM. As the foremost independent body determining food testing standards worldwide, AOAC Performance Tested Method status provides complete assurance that a totally independent third-party review has been undertaken and the test kit fully meets all performance claims.
In modern, intensive farming practice, animals used for food production are often treated with a variety of antibiotics and hormones for therapeutic purposes and growth promotion. There is a risk that humans can subsequently consume these additives. Consumption of contaminated foodstuffs may result in acute food poisoning, allergic reactions or contribute to the development of antibiotic-resistant micro-organisms. To protect consumers, regulatory authorities closely control the level of drug residues entering the human food chain and consequently, live animals and resultant foodstuffs need to be rapidly tested using sensitive detection methods such as Biacore’s SPR technology to ensure contamination levels do not exceed specified legal limits.
Biacore has currently eight Qflex kits developed for detection of veterinary drug residues and β-Agonists.
Biacore’s SPR technology forms the basis of a rapid and reliable automated biosensor system. This meets the specific needs of the food industry and governmental surveillance programs for analyzing additives, residues and contaminants in a variety of foodstuffs including infant formula, milk, cereals, flour, sport drinks, beef, honey and pet foods.
The wide range of applications covered by Biacore’s products ensures a broad customer base that includes life science research, drug discovery and development applications in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology sectors as well as application in food industries.
With marketing and sales operation in North America, Europe, Japan and Australia and long–term distribution arrangements in Asia Pacific and South America, Biacore has established a leadership position in SPR technology and currently holds approximately 90 % of the market. The company offers instrumentation, sensor chips and reagents, as well as software and application expertise including contract research services.
Biacore systems enable direct detection and monitoring of biomolecular interactions events in real time without labelling and often without purification of the substances involved. Scientists are able to see binding events as they occur and thereby generate more information about biological interactions than from any other single alternative technology.
Biacore’s SPR technology has been used across areas such as life science research since the early 1990s and has been proven in over 3500 peer-reviewed scientific papers. Many of these papers now include applications of Biacore’s SPR technology in the analysis of food materials.