The famous Gir cow is worth its weight in gold, quite literally! After four years of extensive research, scientists at Junagadh Agricultural University (JAU) have actually found gold in the urine of Gir cows. The analysis of urine samples of 400 Gir cows done at the Food Testing Laboratory of JAU showed traces of gold ranging from three mg to 10 mg from one litre urine. The precious metal was found in ionic form, which is gold salts soluble in water. The team of researchers led by Dr B A Golakia, head of JAU’s biotechnology department, used gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) method to analyze the urine samples. “Till now, we have heard about presence of gold in cow urine from our ancient scriptures and its medicinal properties. Since there was no detailed scientific analysis to prove this, we decided to undertake a research on cow urine. We analyzed 400 samples of Gir cow urine and found traces of gold,” Golakia said. Golakia said the gold from urine can be extracted and solidified using chemical processes. The researchers also screened urine sample of camel, buffaloes, sheep and goat but they did not find any anti-biotic elements. Of the 5,100 compounds found in Gir cow urine 388 have immense medicinal value that can cure several ailments,” said Dr B I Golakia, head of JAU’s biotechnology department. He was assisted by researchers Jaimin, Rajesh Vijay and Shraddha. They will now analyze urine samples of all 39 indigenous cow breeds of India for the same purpose. JAU’s Food Testing Laboratory is accredited by the National Accreditation Board for Testing Calibration Laboratories (NABL). On an average, it conducts 50,000 tests every year on various products which include items of exports, dairy items, vegetables, pulses, oil seeds, honey , pesticide residuals and other commodities. The lab is a joint venture of JAU Union ministry of food processing industries, Indian Council for Agricultural Research (ICAR) and Gujarat Agro Industries Corporation (GAIC).”Now, we are working on the use of Gir cow urine on human and plant pathogen. The experiments are being conducted to use it in treatmen t of human diseases and plant protections,” Golakia added.