Rapid, sensitive, and accurate point-of-care detection of lethal amatoxins in urine

Candace S. Bever, Kenneth D. Swanson, Elizabeth I. Hamelin, Michael Filigenzi, Robert H. Poppenga, Jennifer Kaae, Luisa W. Cheng, Larry H. Stanker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Globally, mushroom poisonings cause about 100 human deaths each year, with thousands of people requiring medical assistance. Dogs are also susceptible to mushroom poisonings and require medical assistance. Cyclopeptides, and more specifically amanitins (or amatoxins, here), are the mushroom poison that causes the majority of these deaths. Current methods (predominantly chromatographic, as well as antibody-based) of detecting amatoxins are time-consuming and require expensive equipment. In this work, we demonstrate the utility of the lateral flow immunoassay (LFIA) for the rapid detection of amatoxins in urine samples. The LFIA detects as little as 10 ng/mL of α-amanitin (α-AMA) or γ-AMA, and 100 ng/mL of β-AMA in urine matrices. To demonstrate application of this LFIA for urine analysis, this study examined fortified human urine samples and urine collected from exposed dogs. Urine is sampled directly without the need for any pretreatment, detection from urine is completed in 10 min, and the results are read by eye, without the need for specialized equipment. Analysis of both fortified human urine samples and urine samples collected from intoxicated dogs using the LFIA correlated well with liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry (LC-MS) methods.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number123
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 2020


  • Amanitins
  • Amatoxins
  • Lateral flow immunoassay
  • Mushroom poisoning
  • Point-of-care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Toxicology
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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