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Rapid Wheat Varietal Identification using the Agilent 2100 Bioanalyzer and Automated Pattern-Matching

Accurate identification of wheat varieties is of paramount importance to the milling industry in many countries. This Application Note describes how the Agilent 2100 bioanalyzer and the Protein 230 assay can be used in conjunction with a third-party software, to analyze wheat proteins for varietal identification.

Authentication of varieties is important for the cereal industry for maintenance and testing of grain quality to meet market requirements. The charge-based separation of proteins by the acid- PAGE (polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis) technique is widely used for wheat varietal identification. However, this requires highly skilled operators to prepare, run and scan the gels and interpret band patterns. Also, there are safety concerns regarding the toxicity of unpolymerised acrylamide. While acid-PAGE is effective in analytical laboratories, the routine method can take up to two days. This is too slow for use at mill intake, which requires assessment of the wheat shipment during the period of delivery – typically under one hour. In this Application Note we demonstrate the use of the Agilent 2100 assay, with bioanalyzer and Protein 230 the Nonlinear Dynamics’ Phoretix 1D Advanced (TotalLab TL120 DM) computerized pattern-recognition software to provide a better alternative to acid-PAGE. The aim of this study was to develop a robust, automated method for rapid identification of wheat varieties.