This research project aims to develop a laboratory method to detect peanuts in food products.
The objective of this 1-year study was to develop a sensitive and robust assay for the identification of peanuts in commercial products.
<p>The assay used a DNA-based reaction known as PCR, which makes it possible to detect tiny amounts of DNA, and was based on the amplification of peanut specific sequences by visualisation using an ELISA.
<p>The test was selective for peanut, and did not cross-react with 33 other foods tested, including tree nuts, legumes and meats.
<p>It was also sensitive (being able to detect as little as 100 nanograms peanut or 2 parts per million peanut in a biscuit) and was accurate (being able to detect trace samples of peanut in spiked and a number of different commercial samples). The contractors conclude that the assay may readily be transferred to commercial testing.
<p>Find more about this project and other FSA food safety-related projects at the <a href="http://www.food.gov.uk/science/research/" target="_blank">Food Standards Agency Research webpage</a>.