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Loria G.R.,Laboratory of Histology and Immunohistochemistry | Puleio R.,Laboratory of Histology and Immunohistochemistry | Schiavo M.R.,Laboratory of Histology and Immunohistochemistry | Giambruno P.,ASP n. | And 2 more authors.
Tropical Animal Health and Production | Year: 2012

European and Italian legislation have banned use of growth promoters in livestock since 1988, but epidemiological data show that anabolic drugs are still being used illegally. Recent surveys carried out on the cattle farms in Northern Italy have confirmed the presence of growth-promoting hormones. Authors report data on growth performances in 80 Valle del Belice × Comisana weaned lambs experimentally treated with 17 beta-estradiol with 0. 5 ml solution of oil Depot Estradiol ® (containing 5 mg of 17β-estradiol valerate) by intramuscular injection into the thigh. The experiment was founded by the National Ministry of Health, to validate histological test for surveillance and control of growth-promoting hormones in sheep. This study confirmed the strong correlation between clinical and anatomopathological features and growth performances of treated animals. Otherwise, no significant differences were found on in vivo performance of the lambs. Estradiol treatment showed heavier shoulders and necks on treated lambs, while the loins were significantly lighter. Moreover, lamb-estradiol-treated groups showed lower separable and inseparable fat percentage than lamb-control groups. © 2012 Springer Science+Business Media B.V. Source

Lavazza A.,Electronic Microscopy Laboratory | Tittarelli C.,Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale del Piemonte Liguria e Valle dAosta | Cerioli M.,Epidemiological Unit
Viruses | Year: 2015

Negative staining electron microscopy methods can be employed for the diagnosis of viral particles in animal samples. In fact, negative staining electron microscopy methods are used to identify viruses, especially in minor species and wild animals, when no other methods are available and in cases of rare, emerging or re-emerging infections. In particular, immune-electron-microscopy with convalescent sera is employed to detect etiological agents when there are undiagnosed clinical outbreaks, when alternative diagnostic methods fail due to the lack of immunological reagents and primers, and when there is no indicative clinical suspect. An overview of immune-electron-microscopy with convalescent sera’s use in the diagnosis of new and unsuspected viruses in animals of domestic and wild species is provided through the descriptions of the following four diagnostic veterinary cases: (I) enteric viruses of pigs: Porcine Rotavirus, Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea Virus, Porcine Circovirus and Porcine Torovirus; (II) Rotavirus and astrovirus in young turkeys with enteritis; (III) Parvovirus-like particles in pheasants; and (IV) Lagoviruses: Rabbit Hemorrhagic Disease Virus and European Brown Hare Syndrome Virus. © 2014 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. Source

Pitardi D.,Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale del Piemonte Liguria e Valle dAosta | Cini B.,Test Veritas Srl | Paleologo M.,TECNA S.r.l. | Brouwer A.,BioDetection Systems BV BDS | And 8 more authors.
Food Additives and Contaminants - Part A Chemistry, Analysis, Control, Exposure and Risk Assessment | Year: 2015

Challenges to testing for the illicit use of anabolic substances in meat-producing animals stem from the production of new synthetic compounds and the administration of low-dose cocktails to circumvent detection by the surveillance schemes of European Union member states. This work evaluated for the first time GR-CALUX, a highly sensitive reporter gene assay, as a screening tool for the detection of synthetic glucocorticoids in bovine urine. In order to verify the effect of natural corticosteroids on the method, the bioassay was tested first using blank urine samples collected at the farm and the slaughterhouse. Next, the dose–response curves were measured for the most commonly used synthetic glucocorticoids. The bioassay’s ability to detect them in spiked and incurred samples of bovine urine was then evaluated. Finally, its performance was compared against a commercially available ELISA kit ordinarily used in screening activities. GR-CALUX performance did not appear to be influenced by physiological levels of endogenous corticosteroids in the farm samples, whereas an increase in these hormones might invalidate the analysis in samples obtained at the slaughterhouse. Using pure compounds, GR-CALUX showed a high sensitivity toward the synthetic glucocorticosteroids tested in order of relative potencies: flumethasone ≫ dexamethasone > betamethasone > methylprednisolone > prednisolone. As expected, the bioassay failed to detect the prohormone prednisone. The results obtained from analysis of the spiked and incurred specimens reproduced those of the blank samples and the pure compounds. GR-CALUX is a promising screening tool for the detection of illicit treatments in meat-producing bovines. Its ability to detect the most commonly used synthetic glucocorticoids was comparable with the ELISA test. Importantly, it appeared to be less susceptible to matrix effects than ELISA. © 2015, © 2015 Taylor & Francis. Source

Agency: Cordis | Branch: H2020 | Program: CSA | Phase: SFS-14b-2015 | Award Amount: 521.83K | Year: 2016

It is acknowledged that historically anti-food fraud capability within Europe has not been consolidated and lacks the coordination and support structures available to those working in food safety. There are various initiatives underway to redress this balance e.g. DGSants Food Fraud network, DG Researchs FoodIntegrity project, as well as numerous national programmes and industry initiatives. One pivotal area that still needs to be addressed is bringing together national research funding bodies to facilitate the development of transnational research programmes. AUTHENT-NET will address this need by mobilising and coordinating relevant research budget holders in order to facilitate the eventual development of a transnational European funding vehicle that will allow Members States (MS) to jointly fund anti-fraud research. Authent-Net comprises a core group of 19 participants from 10 MS, 1 NGO and the US, who are either National research funding bodies; experts in food authenticity, and/or experts in transnational funding mechanisms. AUTHENT-NET will: 1) Bring together relevant MS R&D budget holders to coordinate inter-disciplinary research effort and build a cohesive and sustainable network 2) Undertake stocktaking of existing national research and assess against the international landscape 3) Establish transnational mechanisms and instruments for collating and exchanging information on food authenticity research 4) Develop a high level research and innovation strategy for transnational research and a rationale for a potential ERANET on food authenticity The two year project will have the following expected impacts: improved coordination and communication between relevant MS research budget holders; enhanced cognisance of existing national research; joint strategy for food fraud R&D; agreed priorities and capability to deliver transnational European research on food fraud.

Xerxa E.,International School for Advanced Studies | Barbisin M.,International School for Advanced Studies | Chieppa M.N.,Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale del Piemonte Liguria e Valle dAosta | Krmac H.,International School for Advanced Studies | And 7 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2016

Prion diseases, such as bovine spongiform encephalopathies (BSE), are transmissible neurodegenerative disorders affecting humans and a wide variety of mammals. Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD), a prion disease in humans, has been linked to exposure to BSE prions. This classical BSE (cBSE) is now rapidly disappearing as a result of appropriate measures to control animal feeding. Besides cBSE, two atypical forms (named Hand L-type BSE) have recently been described in Europe, Japan, and North America. Here we describe the first wide-spectrum microarray analysis in whole blood of atypical BSEinfected cattle. Transcriptome changes in infected animals were analyzed prior to and after the onset of clinical signs. The microarray analysis revealed gene expression changes in blood prior to the appearance of the clinical signs and during the progression of the disease. A set of 32 differentially expressed genes was found to be in common between clinical and preclinical stages and showed a very similar expression pattern in the two phases. A 22-gene signature showed an oscillating pattern of expression, being differentially expressed in the preclinical stage and then going back to control levels in the symptomatic phase. One gene, SEL1L3, was downregulated during the progression of the disease. Most of the studies performed up to date utilized various tissues, which are not suitable for a rapid analysis of infected animals and patients. Our findings suggest the intriguing possibility to take advantage of whole blood RNA transcriptional profiling for the preclinical identification of prion infection. Further, this study highlighted several pathways, such as immune response and metabolism that may play an important role in peripheral prion pathogenesis. Finally, the gene expression changes identified in the present study may be further investigated as a fingerprint for monitoring the progression of disease and for developing targeted therapeutic interventions. © 2016 Xerxa et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. Source

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