Aspergillus Detection Assays allow growers to test cannabis samples for four pathogenic species of Aspergillus (A. fumigatus, A. flavus, A. niger, and A. terreus). One Plant DNA Collection Kit is included with the price of each test. Each kit collects one sample and you will need one kit for each plant that you want to test, however, additional tests can be ordered on a single sample up to two weeks after submitting them to our lab. Shipping calculated during checkout. All taxes are included



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Aspergillus is a saprophytic fungus that helps remove environmental carbon and nitrogen from the earth’s atmosphere. Aspergillus is most commonly found in soil, but its spores propagate rapidly in the air with each fungus capable of producing thousands of conidia. These spores are commonly spread through environmental disturbances and strong air currents, that allow them to be found both indoors and out. Aspergillus spores are tiny, even by biological standards, allowing them to travel great distances in the air.

Why is Aspergillus dangerous to cannabis users?

Aspergillus is especially dangerous to immunocompromised individuals, in whom the airborne spores can lead to a debilitating invasive infection, called aspergillosis, that oftentimes proves to be fatal. A 1992 study found the incidence of cases of aspergillosis per year to be 1 – 2 patients per 100,000 people; however, this number is likely much higher today due to the increased use of immunosuppressants and stem cell therapy. A 1983 study isolated Aspergillus fumigatus spores from cannabis smoke, indicating the spores do in fact survive combustion. There are a variety of factors that can increase an individual’s likelihood of developing aspergillosis including, but not limited to:

  • The ingestion of immunosuppressive drugs (after undergoing bone or organ transplants)
  • Low white blood cell count (resulting from chemotherapy)
  • Asthma or cystic fibrosis
  • Long-term corticosteroid therapy

While immunocompromised individuals are at greater risk of Aspergillus infection, there has been at least one confirmed case of aspergillosis developing in an immunocompetent cannabis user.

There are several hundred different species of Aspergillus, and not all are dangerous to humans. A. fumigatus is the species that most commonly causes infection, and it has been linked to the death of at least one immunocompromised cannabis user. A. flavus, A. niger, and A. terreus have also been shown to cause infection.

Who requires Aspergillus testing on cannabis?

A. fumigatus, A. flavus, A. niger, A. terreus                              A. fumigatus, A. flavus, A. niger

*Only required for select matrices, view the page for the State you’re interested in for more information

Why Use qPCR for Aspergillus testing on Cannabis?

Aspergillus grows poorly on various culture-based microbial tests. As a result, there are no Aspergillus-specific culture tests on the market. This is likely due to Aspergillus forming heterogeneous macro-colonies in solution and thus single CFUs are actually derived from a clump of hundreds to thousands of viable cells.

Only DNA-based testing can accurately differentiate between Aspergillus species. This is important because only specific species  cause Aspergillosis, the potentially deadly lung infection. On the other hand, labs that rely on visual inspection to differentiate Aspergillus species have incorrectly identified A. brasiliensis as A. niger, leading to false failures.


Test for Aspergillus with Confidence
We offer a variety of qPCR assays that can test for A. flavusA. fumigatusA. niger, and A. terreus on cannabis samples. The Four-Species Aspergillus Assay will yield a positive result if any of the four required species of Aspergillus which serves as an initial test to determine if any Aspergillus is present. Additionally, we also offer individual assays for each of the Aspergillus species. All the assays we offer have gone through a rigorous manufacturer validation to show accuracy, precision, specificity, linearity and limit of detection.

California growers can test one cannabis sample for all six required microbial targets, using just two tests! The Four-Species Aspergillus Assay in one test and the STEC/Salmonella Test in the other.

*For Research Use Only*

We developed a simple method to collect microbial DNA samples from your plants. This enables anyone in the world to take advantage of our services because our kits produce a purified DNA sample which is 100% legal to mail. All you need are the same materials (tweezers, alcohol, etc) required for any of our other tests. If you would like to test something other than plant material please contact us before placing your order. 

All testing is offered for research purposes only and not valid for regulatory certification.



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