Commission approves new BSE tests

June 20, 2003

Brussels, 19 Jun 2003

The European Commission today approved two new rapid BSE tests, Prionics Check LIA and InPro CDI-5 made by the companies Prionics and InPro. The two new tests should help to stimulate more competition in the field.

Following a laboratory evaluation and a field trial, these tests were recommended for approval by the Scientific Steering Committee (SSC). All five tests can now be used to screen cattle for BSE. They are designed to detect BSE in brain material, collected from animals at the slaughterhouse or which have died on the farm. So far tests designed to detect BSE in live animals have not been evaluated.

All five tests are also provisionally approved to detect TSE in sheep and goats, pending a formal evaluation. The three currently approved tests are Prionics Check Western, Bio-Rad TeSeE (previously Bio-Rad Platelia) and the Enfer BSE test produced by the companies Prionics, Bio-Rad and Enfer. They were evaluated by the Commission in 1999. The two newly approved tests have gone through a similar evaluation process, completed by a field trial under practical conditions. In March 2003 the SSC recommended their formal approval in the framework of the TSE Regulation (999/2001). In the EU all healthy bovine cattle slaughter above 30 months and all fallen stock above 24 months have to be tested for BSE with some derogation for some countries.

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