News Archive 2011
Innovation award for ifp allergen rapid tests
The AgraStrip® allergen product line has been awarded the Lower Austrian "Karl Ritter von Ghega" innovation award. The prize, which is worth 10.000 €, was awarded to Romer Labs based in Tulln, Austria, which distributes ifp Institut für Produktqualität’s rapid tests for the detection of food allergens. The award is proof of the innovative potential of the companies involved and confirms the success of the sales cooperation that has been existing for one year.
Currently 13 different allergens can be detected with the help of AgraStrip®. The principle of the test unites a simple and very fast method for extracting the protein from the food with the unambiguous information of a pregnancy test. The user is not bound to a laboratory, but can analyse products, semi-finished products, environmental samples or rinse waters right there on the company’s premises, without any additional equipment.
In March of this year, ifp won the 2011 InterLabTec-AWARD for the development of EnzymeFast®. This is a new microtitre plate format product line for the photometric determination of sugars, acids and other metabolites in foods. Along with the expansion of the AgraStrip® and EnzymeFast® product range, ifp is also involved in the development of further new product lines.
ifp offers rapid detection of GMO in honey
A recent judgement of the European Court of Justice on genetically modified (GM) pollen is causing a stir on the honey market. Pollen is to be regarded as an ingredient, no matter whether it was added to the honey or came to be there by coincidence. This makes honey inadvertently containing pollen from a genetically modified organism a "food produced from GMOs" in the sense of Regulation (EC) No. 1829/2003, and hence subject to EU approval.
Within the EU, pollen from the corn line MON810, which is approved for cultivation, could now produce positive test results in honey. MON810 is currently approved only for a limited number of foods and food ingredients produced from corn. This takes honey containing MON810 pollen off the market, since these pollen are now defined as an ingredient. Honeys imported from third countries are expected to potentially contain traces of other GM corn as well as of genetically modified canola or soy.
In order to obtain fast and reliable results concerning the presence or absence of GMO in honey, ifp Institut für Produktqualität offers comprehensive screening. The ifp service lab tests for the genetic elements 35S, NOS, CTP2-CP4EPSPS, FMV, pat and bar, which are frequently found in GMO. These parameters can be used to detect more than 95% of all GMO. If the result is positive, further analyses for identification and quantification of the GMO in the honey can be performed.
For more information on our GMO analytics, please contact Frau Dr. Anette Rejman Lipinski at +49 (0)30 / 76 68 60 - 27 or send an email to
New cooperation in the field of antibody technologies
ifp Institut für Produktqualität now cooperates with the junior research group “Antibody Technologies” of Potsdam University (Institute for Biochemistry and Biology). In doing so the ifp is further expanding its extensive know-how in the field of immunisation and development of antibody-based test kit systems.
The cooperation allows for extensive exchange between the sciences and the economic sector. ifp will be sharing its experience in turning technology into marketable products and provide students of Potsdam University with the possibility of completing their Bachelor’s or Master’s thesis at the innovative company. Also in the pipeline is a lecture series designed to give students an insight into the relevant economic sector.
The research group around Dr. Katja Heilmann specialises in the production of monoclonal antibodies and in the development of strategies to reduce the time required for immunisation and subsequent selection of the antibody-producing cells. Within the context of cooperation with ifp, this technological expertise will go into a joint research project and new product developments.
The company launched its first series of lateral flow rapid tests for the detection of food allergens in 2008 (ImmunoFast® product line). Last year the globally acting diagnostics company Romer Labs took over world-wide distribution of these products, which are now available under the brand name of AgraStrip®.
Junior research group “Antibody Technologies” at Potsdam University
The junior research group “Antibody Technologies” at the Institute for Biochemistry and Biology of Potsdam University deals with the optimisation of monoclonal antibody production. Many years of experience in this field have made possible immunisations with peptides, proteins and haptens. Subsequent characterization of the antibodies as well as marking and developing suitable detection systems are also among the group’s routine activities. The project is application-based and focuses on the education and training of young talents. For more information, please click here.
Prof. Dr. med. Margitta Worm has joined ifp’s food allergen advisory board
ifp Institut für Produktqualität is delighted to announce that Prof. Dr. med. Margitta Worm will from now on be supporting the company’s scientific advisory board. Prof. Dr. med. Margitta Worm from the Allergy Center at the Charité specialises in clinical experimental allergology and in food allergies.
With this new member, ifp will be expanding its scientific activities in the field of food allergens. Moreover, ifp participates in several funded research projects. Along with developing rapid food allergen testing procedures, ifp also offers comprehensive testing for allergens as a service.
EHEC Detection Within 24 Hours
ifp Institut für Produktqualität detects the newly identified EHEC strain within 24 hours. The pathogen linked to the recent series of illness and death is suspected to originate from plant foodstuffs, wherefore consumers have been advised to avoid raw vegetables. Meanwhile sprouts are under investigation as the potential cause of the epidemic.
ifp is a leading manufacturer of molecular biological rapid methods for the detection of pathogens in food. Current tests have shown that the company’s EHEC assay also detects the newly discovered strain of the germ. The DNA test based on the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was specifically developed by ifp. The company’s lab is offering a 24 hour service seven days a week.
“The PCR technology enables our lab to detect the dangerous bacteria within just one day. In comparison with the conventional methods, this time advantage is essential in order to identify EHEC-contaminated foods and prevent further spreading of the epidemic. It goes without saying that even on weekends, our analytical services must not rest,” says Dr. Wolfgang Weber, General Manager of ifp Institut für Produktqualität GmbH.
Enterohaemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC) are certain strains of the intestinal bacteria Escherichia coli (E. coli) causing dangerous, haemorrhagic diarrhea. It has recently become known that the pathogen currently spreading in Europe is a hybrid between the rare serotype O104:H4 and a second, more distantly related E. coli strain. In severe cases, infection can lead to the hemolytic-uremic syndrome (HUS).
The detection system developed by ifp allows the determination of presence or absence of EHEC bacteria in a food sample. In case of a positive result, subsequent tests can be carried out for confirmation.
EHEC Detection Made Possible via Real-Time PCR by ifp
The ifp Institut fuer Produktqualitaet competently offers the detection of EHEC (Enterohemorrhagic E. coli) in foods via real-time PCR. The food sample is selectively enriched while the DNA is extracted. In case of the existence of EHEC bacteria, these will be detected by means of real-time PCR. The result is already available after 24 hours.
The Detection Method
ifp hereby detects Verotoxin producing Escherichia coli stx 1/2, VTEC (synonym “shiga-like Toxin producing E. coli, STEC”). By applying this specific detection method the presence of EHEC bacteria in foods can either be excluded or in case of positive findings verified through further investigations.
Enterohemorrhagic E. coli (EHEC) depend to pathogenic strains of the intestinal bacterium Escherichia coli (e. coli) and are able to cause dangerous, bloody diarrhea in the human body.
For further information, please contact Ms Britta Dollase at 030 / 76 68 60 - 21 or send an email to
InterLabTec Award for EnzymeFast® - the new enzymatics product line by ifp Insitut fuer Produktqualitaet
Berlin/Munich, March 24, 2011 – Just in time for its official launch, the new EnzymeFast® product line by ifp Insitut für Produktqualität (Berlin) has been awarded the InterLabTec Award for Innovative Solutions for Analysis in Labs and Processing. The microtiter plate test for the enzymatic determination of lactose and D-galactose in foodstuffs was able to convince the jury in the “Physico-Chemical Analysis” category.
The award was presented during the 1st InterLabTec congress in Munich by INTERLAB e. V. (Internationale Gemeinschaft der Laboratoriumsleiter in der Lebensmittelwirtschaft) in cooperation with mcongressconsult and Bücker Fachverlag.
“EnzymeFast® is the fourth product line developed and brought to the market by ifp within five years. Being honoured with the InterLabTec Award is an acknowledgement of our continuous efforts to develop innovative products for the optimization of processes in routine analytics and quality assurance,” says Tobias Hein, product manager of ifp.
The new test for the determination of sugars, acids and other metabolites combines the advantages of classical enzymatic UV methods with the ease of use of a modern microtiter plate format. This eliminates the biggest disadvantage of the conventional method – laborious single measurements in a cuvette photometer. The parallel setup of blank, standards, control, and samples in a microtiter plate allows a substantial reduction of time and effort at medium to high sample throughput. From an economic point of view, material savings are another key feature of the method.
“As an accredited provider of various analytical services for the food industry, ifp is familiar with the issues of daily lab routine. Since for decades there has been no suitable alternative to the traditional cuvette method, we decided to develop a corresponding microtiter plate test on our own,” says Dr. Wolfgang Weber, general manager of ifp.
The first EnzymeFast® kit in the market allows the parallel determination of lactose and D-galactose. Other parameters including sucrose/glucose/fructose, ascorbic acid (vitamin C), malic acid, citric acid, isocitric acid, ethanol, and lactic acid are in the pipeline and will be brought to the market soon.