1. To create a multi-target mycotoxin purification system: NeoVentures has developed the technology necessary to routinely immobilize aptamers for affinity column based purification of mycotoxins. This objective is focused on demonstrating that multiple aptamers can be combined within a single column.
<P>2. To develop aptamer/mycotoxin detection systems: For ochratoxin A, a detection system based on terbium binding has been commercialized. For the remaining four aptamer/ mycotoxin relationships rapid and sensitive detection systems must be established.
<P>3. To validate performance of each aptamer for each mycotoxin: Validation of the multiple target systems will be performed through the use of existing reference methods, primarily based on HPLC analysis of the mycotoxins from naturally contaminated material.
Expected Benefits: <br/>
A quality assurance program that is based on objective evaluation of actual toxin levels at the site of grain delivery will deliver greater cost-effectiveness and safety than testing based on analysis of larger blended samples of grain. For such a system to be commercially acceptable it needs to be capable of detecting the presence of multiple mycotoxins simultaneously. This project is targeted at moving the aptamers that NeoVentures has identified to date for ochratoxin A, aflatoxins, fumonisin, deoxynivalenol and zearalerone into detection formats suitable for incorporation into automated detection devices.
The outcome of the project will be platforms that are clearly ready for incorporation into dedicated automated detection devices that are being developed by third commercial party to be named later.
A detection system that is based on point of delivery analysis of individual truckloads for multiple mycotoxins would provide Ontario with global leadership in food safety, and provide a more objective basis for grain grading for farmers.