Development of a β-Lactoglobulin Sensor Based on SPR for Milk Allergens Detection

Jon Ashley*, Roberta D'Aurelio, Monika Piekarska, Jeff Temblay, Mike Pleasants, Linda Trinh, Thomas L Rodgers, Ibtisam E Tothill

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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    A sensitive and label-free surface plasmon resonance (SPR) based sensor was developed in this work for the detection of milk allergens. β-lactoglobulin (BLG) protein was used as the biomarker for cow milk detection. This is to be used directly in final rinse samples of cleaning in-place (CIP) systems of food manufacturers. The affinity assay was optimised and characterised before a standard curve was performed in pure buffer conditions, giving a detection limit of 0.164 µg mL-1 as a direct binding assay. The detection limit can be further enhanced through the use of a sandwich assay and amplification with nanomaterials. However, this was not required here, as the detection limit achieved exceeded the required allergen detection levels of 2 µg mL-1 for β-lactoglobulin. The binding affinities of the polyclonal antibody for BLG, expressed by the dissociation constant (KD), were equal to 2.59 × 10-9 M. The developed SPR-based sensor offers several advantages in terms of label-free detection, real-time measurements, potential on-line system and superior sensitivity when compared to ELISA-based techniques. The method is novel for this application and could be applied to wider food allergen risk management decision(s) in food manufacturing.
    Original languageEnglish
    Issue number2
    Number of pages11
    Publication statusPublished - 2018

    Bibliographical note

    This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).


    • Allergen
    • Biosensor
    • Milk protein
    • Surface plasmon resonance (SPR)
    • β-lactoglobulin (BLG)

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