The Texas A&M Veterinary Medical Diagnostic Laboratory (TVMDL) Drug Testing Laboratory in College Station recently earned ISO 17025 accreditation from the American Association for Laboratory Accreditation (A2LA) Competition Animal Drug Testing Laboratory Accreditation Program.

One of only a handful of laboratories in the United States to boast this internationally recognized accreditation, the laboratory can now serve as an option for both in-state and out-of-state animal owners to send samples for sound and accurate testing.

A non-governmental, public service-focused association, A2LA is itself ISO accredited as a proficiency testing provider, inspection body and product certifier. According to A2LA, the Competition Animal Drug Testing Laboratory Accreditation Program covers screening and confirmatory methodologies, including immunoassay, chromatographic and spectrometric techniques, for the qualitative and quantitative detection and identification of prohibited substances and their metabolites under state or other regulatory authorities.

“This accreditation demonstrates competence and confidence in what we do on a daily basis in the Drug Testing Laboratory,” said assistant section head Travis Mays, MS. “Clients want assurance that the lab they send their samples to is recognized in the industry for their performance. This accreditation gives our clients that confidence and also helps establish new client relationships.”

The Drug Testing Laboratory has serviced the Texas’ racing industry since 1989, when the Texas Racing Act gave TVMDL primary responsibility for providing drug-testing services to the pari-mutuel horse and greyhound racing industries. The racing industries and the livestock show industry rely on TVMDL to screen for illegal and regulated therapeutic drugs in performance animals.

Annually, the Drug Testing Laboratory at TVMDL performs more than 3,500 tests for livestock shows and 7,400 tests for canine and equine racing animals. Additionally, expert chemists work with veterinarians by offering diagnostic testing for companion animals and livestock to ensure animal and public health.

In order to apply for A2LA accreditation for animal drug testing under the chemical field of testing, each applicant must identify the testing technologies used. The Drug Testing Laboratory handles a number of test types, including enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and mass spectrometry.

“The TVMDL Drug Testing Laboratory is dedicated to providing the highest quality animal testing offered to the livestock and racing industries,” said Bruce L. Akey, MS, DVM, interim director of TVMDL. “This accreditation establishes us as a best practices laboratory that uses validated and accepted drug testing protocols. As a service agency to the state of Texas, we strive to give clients the most accurate results we can at an affordable price.”

The Drug Testing Laboratory is well-placed to improve upon already state-of-the-art diagnostic assays in order to best serve the livestock and racing industries in and around the state. For more information on the services offered at the Texas A&M Veterinary Medical Diagnostic Laboratory, visit