A rapid antibody-based detection system has been developed for the presence of free trenbolone in bovine samples. Polyclonal antibodies were produced that showed specificity toward epitopes located around the steroidal A-ring of the trenbolone molecule. These antibodies were shown to have little or no recognition for many closely related compounds. The antibodies were utilized as the specific biorecognition molecules in competitive and inhibitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay systems. While both assays were able to detect low nanogram concentrations of trenbolone in bovine bile, the competitive format was more sensitive (2.41 vs 17.15 ng/mL for TRAb2 and 3.31 vs 30.73 ng/mL for TRAb1). This format was also more accurate and the data produced by this assay fitted more closely to the four parameter equation used to calculate the standard curve. This was a common finding with both of the polyclonal antibodies, suggesting that this was a characteristic of the format used.
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