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Food Addit Contam Part A Chem Anal Control Expo Risk Assess. 2012;29(5):727-35. doi: 10.1080/19440049.2011.647097. Epub 2012 Feb 1.

Illegal treatment of barrows with nandrolone ester: effect on growth, histology and residue levels in urine and hair.

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RIKILT Institute for Food Safety, Wageningen University and Research Centre, PO Box 230, 6700 AE Wageningen, The Netherlands.


The effect of 17β-19-nortestosterone (17βNT) treatment of barrows on residue levels and growth was evaluated. Five barrows were treated three times during the fattening period with 17βNT phenylpropionate (Nandrosol, nandrolone phenylpropionate 50 mg/ml,1 mg/kg body weight). Another five barrows were untreated and five boars (untreated) were kept as positive control. Boars and treated barrows showed a 13 and 9% improvement in growth compared to untreated barrows, with mean final body weights of 121.6, 117.8 and 109.0 kg, respectively. The bulbourethral glands of the treated barrows were three times heavier than untreated barrows. The histology of the prostate and bulbourethral gland of the treated barrows was comparable to the boars, whereas the control barrows showed atrophic glands. Levels of 17βNT ester in hair from treated barrows were high, whereas boars and untreated barrows did not show levels above LLQ. It is concluded that analysis of hair can detect illegal treatment with 17βNT ester in barrows. The size of the bulbourethral gland can also be used for screening in the slaughterhouse.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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