The Toxicology Diagnostic laboratory is responsible for providing a highly specialized veterinary diagnostic service in South Africa. Our main function is to screen samples for toxic substances, investigate unknown causes of livestock poisoning, and interpret laboratory results in a meaningful manner and advice clients. In addition, this laboratory strives to make quick diagnoses so that the affected animals can be treated as soon as possible. The test results are always interpreted holistically in light of the clinical signs and post mortem findings, i.e. a multidisciplinary approach is followed. The diagnostic tests provided by our laboratory are listed in Table 1. This table gives information regarding the specific test, type and volume of samples required and turnaround time.

TABLE 1: Toxicology Diagnostic services





Aflatoxin total ELISAMyc 01Animal Feed 500g4 Work days
Deoxynivalenol ELISAMyc 02Animal Feed 500g4 Work days
Fumonisin ELISAMyc 03Animal Feed 500g4 Work days
Ochratoxin  ELISAMyc 04Animal Feed 500g4 Work days
T2 /HT2-Toxin ELISAMyc 05Animal Feed 500g4 Work days
Zearalenone ELISAMyc 06Animal Feed 500g4 Work days
GossypolGos 08Cotton seed; Cotton oilcake 500g6 Work days
PesticidesPest 09Vomitus; Stomach contents; Rumen contents; Feed; Bait; Soil  at least 50g and Water (2litres)4 Work days
StrychnineStr 10Stomach contents; Vomitus; Bait at least 50g, urine, kidney4 Work days
ArsenicAs 11Rumen contents; Stomach contents; Liver 50g, suspected bait4 Work days
Ionophores screenIon 12Animal Feed; Lick 500g6 Work days
Ionophores quantifiedIon 13Animal Feed (no premixes) 500g6 Work days
Urea Ur 15Animal Feed; Lick 100g, water4 Work days
Sodium chlorideNa 16Animal Feed; Lick 100g4 Work days
Trace elements: Cu; Fe; Zn; Mn in tissue and Ca + PO4 only on rib bonesTE 17

Liver; Kidney 50g (Fresh or in formalin)

Rib bones 200g

6 Work days
DigestionTE 17Liver; Kidney (See above)6 Work days
1080 (Monofluoro-acetate)Mo 18Bait (small tubs of lard); Gifblaar leaves5 Work days
Lead in organsPb 20Liver; Kidney 50g4 Work days
PhosphinePh 21Stomach contents; Rumen contents; Feed; Bait 50g in tightly sealed container, suspected poison4 Work days
pHpH 22Water; Feed; Stomach contents; Rumen contents  20g4 Work days
Electrolytes (Ca; Mg; Na; K; PO4 in serum)E 23Serum (has to be centrifuged and serum separated) No hemolised samples (5ml)6 Work days
Nitrite/ NitrateNO 24Water; Eye fluid; Rumen contents; Stomach contents; Fluid of heart sack (1ml) and plant material4 Work days
Plant IdentificationPI 25Plants pressed between cardboard or layers of newspaper. (No plastic) Roots and leaves attached. Flowers and fruits included if possible 10 Work days
Fungi IdentificationFI 26Feed  (Contact PPRI)Client pays PPRI
CyanideCya 29Deep muscle; Kidney; Liver; Bait; Water; Rumen contents (very fresh) 50g and plant material4 Work days
Microcystin ELISAMic 30Water, sCUM4 Work days
AmmoniaAm 31Water; Feed4 Work days
Ammonium chloride Feed 100g4 Work days

Formalin samples only suitable for digestion methods. All other samples must be maintained fresh by keeping them on ice or frozen.

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