BioPRYN is a blood pregnancy test for ruminants, and has specific appeal for the commercial U.S. dairy and beef industries because it delivers fast, accurate, safe and economical pregnancy diagnostic results. The technology works on all ruminants, including cattle, sheep, goats, bison, deer, elk and moose. A specific test using ELISA technology, which produces fast results and has been developed for use exclusively in cattle.
BioPRYN evaluates the blood (more specifically, the serum or plasma) of ruminants for a protein called Pregnancy Specific Protein B (PSPB). PSPB is produced by the placenta, and therefore pregnant animals will have the protein in their blood. This makes the test more accurate than earlier attempts at pregnancy diagnosis that evaluated blood or milk for progesterone or other hormones that can occur in normally cycling animals.
The test uses enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) technology for processing, which contributes to its low cost and fast turn-around.
You can submit samples post breeding for cows and 28 days post breeding for heifers, and submit samples 30 days post breeding or buck exposure in sheep and goats. Tests can now be performed at 73 days since calving allowing testing of cows that are bred as early as 45 days after calving.
Lactating cows have residual PSPB from the previous pregnancy until 73 days after calving. To eliminate the risk of a false-positive result, breeders are cautioned to take the sample at 28 days or more after breeding, and 73 days or more after calving. Thus if a cow is bred at 45 days after calving, it is appropriate to take the 28 days post-breeding sample, which is 73 days after calving.
Animals that are detected open can then be immediately returned to aggressive breeding programs using other reproductive technologies.
BioPRYN has been shown to have an overall accuracy rate of 97 percent. In fact, the test is 99 percent accurate in detecting open cows, with only 1 percent showing false-open (false-negative). Correct open detection is very important because giving prostaglandin to misdiagnosed pregnant cows will cause abortion.
The false-pregnant (false-positive) rate for the test is approximately 5 percent. In practice, highproducing dairy cows tend to show slightly higher false-positive rates of 7 to 8 percent, especially during periods of extremely hot weather. It is presumed that a portion of this variance is due to higher early embryonic death, and not to test inaccuracy.
The test itself costs $2.50 from the laboratory that processes it, plus the cost of a sample tube and needle. Shipping expenses also must be added if the tests are not processed locally.
Producers incur approximately the same or less cost using BioPRYN compared to rectal palpation by a veterinarian, and less cost than ultrasound. It is also considerably less expensive than currently available on-farm diagnostic methods.
Cows diagnosed open can then be re-bred more quickly, resulting in tighter calving intervals, more calves born per year, and higher lifetime milk production (because cows achieve peak milk more often).
The test is more convenient to dairies and beef operations because blood can be drawn and shipped any day of the week. This can improve reproductive performance and amount to considerable savings.
In addition, efficiency and cost savings is gained by earlier re-establishing synchronization in cows correctly detected as open.
The test requires 9 hours from laboratory set-up to reporting. A report can be made for the next working day for samples arriving in the lab before noon. If samples are mailed by overnight carrier, add an extra day to this schedule. Results can be faxed or e-mailed back to the producer.
Farm personnel need to draw blood samples from the tail or jugular vein, which is an easy-tolearn procedure. Blood samples of at least 2 mL per animal should be collected in individual vacuum tubes and labeled with each animal’s identification number and farm name. It is important to draw samples using individual, disposable needles, to avoid cross-contamination between animals. Needles and tubes can be obtained from your veterinarian. You can draw blood using a Red, Purple, or Tiger top tube.
Tubes containing blood samples should not be opened and should be packed in a well-padded box to avoid breakage. They do NOT need to be packaged in ice. Samples may stay in transit for several days (two-weeks or more) without compromising the results of the test. Fastest results, however, are achieved when samples are shipped via an overnight carrier.
Dr. R. Garth Sasser of BioTracking, LLC, developed the BioPRYN test using technology licensed from the University of Idaho. BioTracking is the sole manufacturer and distributor of BioPRYN. Garth Sasser also developed the licensed technology while a researcher and faculty member at the University of Idaho.
Thanks to the availability of efficient shipping methods, Attica Veterinary Associates, P.C. – bioPRYN Lab can process samples from livestock producers and veterinarians throughout the United States as well as internationally.