Determination of clenbuterol residues in bovine urine by optical immunobiosensor assay

S A Haughey, G A Baxter, C T Elliott, B Persson, C Jonson, P Bjurling

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43 Citations (Scopus)


Clenbuterol (CBL) is an orally active beta2-adrenoceptor agonist which has been used in veterinary medicine as a broncodilator and an agent of uterine relaxation. It has however become better known as a drug used illegally to promote growth in farm animals. A rapid and sensitive biosensor assay was developed to detect CBL residues in bovine urine. The method involved a simple extraction procedure using tert-butyl methyl ether followed by analysis on the biosensor with results obtained against a buffer calibration curve. The assay allowed up to 88 samples to be analyzed per working day, with each cycle on the biosensor taking approximately 7 min to complete. The limit of detection (LOD) was determined as 0.27 ng/mL using 20 EU reference blank urine samples. The intra-assay Sr ranged from 4.7-7.6% for 3 control samples while the interassay Sr ranged from 9.2-12.7%. The recovery was found to be approximately 95%. A series of incurred urine samples were assayed and the results compared by Enzyme immunoassay (EIA), radio-immunoassay (RIA), and gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS) analysis. Urine samples taken from local abattoirs were also analyzed by the biosensor method and by EIA analysis. The antibody used in the biosensor test exhibited high cross reactivity with at least 7 other beta-agonists allowing detection of these compounds at less than 1 ng/mL in bovine urine.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1025-30
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of AOAC International
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 15 Aug 2001


  • Adrenergic beta-Agonists
  • Animals
  • Biosensing Techniques
  • Calibration
  • Cattle
  • Clenbuterol
  • Cross Reactions
  • Immunoassay
  • Mice
  • Journal Article

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