Q. What is BioPRYN®?

A. BioPRYN is a blood pregnancy test for ruminants, and has specific appeal for the U.S. dairy and meat sheep industry 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.

Q. How does BioPRYN detect pregnancies?

A. BioPRYN evaluates the blood (more specifically, the serum or plasma) of ruminants for a protein called Pregnancy Specific Protein B (PSPB). The 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 which 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.

Q. How early in a pregnancy can animals be tested with BioPRYN?

A. Ewes can be tested at 30 days or later after breeding and those that are detected open can then be immediately returned to aggressive breeding programs using other reproductive technologies.

Q. What is the accuracy of BioPRYN?

A. BioPRYN is greater than 99 percent accurate when the test identifies animals at least 30 days post breeding as open (Not Pregnant) with less than 1 percent showing false-open (false-negative).

The false-pregnant (false-positive) rate for the test is approximately 5 percent, and is most likely due to early embryonic death.

Inaccuracies can occur because of mislabeling of samples or cross contamination of one sample with another. A new needle and tube must be used for each animal.

Q. What are the advantages of using BioPRYN versus other methods of pregnancy diagnosis?

A. Producers incur approximately the same or less cost using BioPRYN compared to ultrasound. It is also considerably less expensive than currently available on-farm diagnostic methods.

The test is more convenient to producers because on-farm personnel can draw and ship blood samples, rather than working around a veterinarian’s schedule. Eliminating ultrasound also frees up the veterinarian to concentrate on management issues and recommendations with the farm staff.

No test is more accurate than BioPRYN. Fewer ewes are called open by mistake, which can improve reproductive performance and amount to considerable savings.

Q. How much does BioPRYN cost?

A. The test itself costs $6.50 from the laboratory that processes it (this price varies by laboratory), plus the cost of a sample tube and needle. Shipping expenses also must be added if the tests are not processed locally.

Q. How long does it take to receive the test results?

A. The test requires 24 hours from laboratory set-up to reporting. Testing schedules vary by laboratory, please contact your local lab prior to sending samples.

Q. How should blood samples be prepared and shipped?

A. Farm personnel draw blood samples from the jugular vein, an easy-to-learn procedure. Blood samples of at least 2 mL per ewe should be collected in individual vacuum tubes and labeled with each ewe’s identification number. It is important to draw samples using individual, disposable needles, to avoid cross-contamination between ewes. Needles and tubes can be obtained from veterinarians or veterinarian supply companies. A red-topped 3, 5, 7, or 10 mL vacuum plastic or glass tube is the least expensive and works best.

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 without compromising the results of the test. Fastest results, however, are achieved when samples are shipped via an overnight carrier. Less expensive second or third day promise of delivery is reliable for most carriers.

Shipping instructions

Q. Who manufactures BioPRYN?

A. Dr. R. Garth Sasser of BioTracking Inc. developed the BioPRYN test using technology licensed from the University of Idaho. BioTracking is the sole manufacturer of BioPRYN.

Q. How can a producer get started using BioPRYN?

A. Producers should contact BioTracking or one of the BioPRYN affiliate laboratories for detailed shipping instructions and answer any questions that the producer may have about the process. Be sure to check with the laboratory for their testing schedule and pricing.

Q. To whom is the test available?

A. Thanks to the availability of efficient shipping methods, BioTracking Inc. or one of the BioPRYN affiliate laboratories can process samples from farms throughout the United States and internationally. Veterinarians or others who serve smaller farms also may wish to group samples from several farms and ship them for processing.

Q. Where can I find more information about BioPRYN?

A. To learn more about BioPRYN, contact BioTracking Inc. or one of the BioPRYN affiliate laboratories

Phone: (208) 882-9736

E-mail: biotracking@biotracking.com