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Rapid and robust authentication of deer antler velvet product by fast PCR-RFLP analysis

Mitochondrial DNA. Part A, DNA mapping, sequencing, and analysis | 11 Jan 2017

C Jiang, Y Jin, X Zhao, Y Yuan, Y Zhao and L Huang
Deer antler velvet is widely used as a vitalizing, tonifying, haemopoietic and strengthening agent for debilitated persons in East Asia. To develop a rapid and sensitive method for the identification of the biological source or origin in antler velvet products, a molecular approach was applied using PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis. The cytochrome b gene sequences of nine cervidae species were analyzed, and a Dde I restriction endonuclease recognition site was found only in sika deer and red deer, the official origin of deer velvet in Chinese pharmacopoeia. A specific primer was designed, and rapid PCR amplified products were subjected to restriction digestion using a fast RFLP procedure. Sika deer and red deer showed two bands of 161 and 102 bp, in contrast to the undigested state of 263 from other antlers. The established PCR-RFLP method was applied in commercial velvet products, and a high frequency of substitution (50%) was revealed in collected commercial samples. The method was successful in detecting contaminated and adulterated antler products in Chinese patent drugs, and the whole detection process was accomplished within 1-1.5 h.
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Moose, Elk, Molecular biology, Reindeer, Sika Deer, Antler, Red Deer, Deer
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