The proposed multi-disciplinary project will focus on the development, validation, and standardisation of reference methods (LC-MS) and cost-effective assays for the identification and quantification of lipophilic marine biotoxins, which have been included in the European legislation, and for which currently no methods exist.
Existing knowledge on functional and biochemical assays will be used. Application of the Biacore SPR biosensor technology will be applied to establish high throughput analyses. The new methods should lead to replacement of the existing animal tests.
A validation study of the developed tests and a feasibility study on the production of CRMs will be carried out according to international validation protocols. Early warning systems, based on gene expression and passive samplers will be developed. <P>The second part of this project will focus on measurements to be taken after the outbreak of a harmful algal bloom, including improvement of decontamination techniques and implementation of traceability systems. <P>A report on the harmonisation of monitoring, control, traceability, and handling of shellfish in EU member states will be prepared. An expert panel will guide and help to avoid overlap with work elsewhere. Links with other EU projects (SHELLFISH, SEAFO ODplus and BioCop) will be established to strengthen research. Contacts with the CEN and the IRMM (Joint Research Centre) will be established to obtain advice on standardisation and CRM production. <P>The following key deliverables will be produced: assays for all lipophilic toxins included in European Directives, SPR technology for high throughput analysis; a reference method; an early warning system based on gene expression and/or passive sampling; recommendations on the certification of reference materials; improved decontamination procedures; report on the harmonisation of monitoring, control and handling contaminated shellfish; workshop and training; newsletters.
For more information about this project, please visit the <a href="http://ec.europa.eu/research/biosociety/food_quality/projects/068_en.ht…; target="_blank">European Commission Food Quality and Safety in Europe</a> Web site.