Navigation Links
Shellfish safer to eat thanks to breakthrough by Queen's scientists

New technology to make shellfish safer to eat has been pioneered by scientists at Queen's University Belfast.

The new test, developed at Queen's Institute for Agri-Food and Land Use, not only ensures shellfish are free of toxins before they reach the food chain but is likely to revolutionise the global fishing industry.

While the current process for monitoring potentially dangerous toxins in shellfish takes up to two days, the new test slashes the testing time to just 30 minutes using new biosensor technology and provides a much more reliable result.

The test detects paralytic shellfish poisons, which paralyse anyone who consumes them and kills around 25 per cent people who are poisoned.

Leading the project is Professor Chris Elliott, Director of the Institute of Agri-Food and Land Use at Queen's School of Biological Sciences, who said: "Toxins secreted by algae, and which concentrate in shellfish, are a major hazard to consumers and can bring huge economic losses to the aquaculture industry.

"While the existence of these toxins has been known for some time, there have been major concerns about the effectiveness of tests used to detect them. There is also growing evidence that climate change is causing many more toxic episodes across the world, resulting in the closure of affected shellfish beds.

"The new test, developed at Queen's, is much quicker and more reliable than existing methods. It works by using unique 'detector proteins' to seek out minute amounts of toxins present in mussels, oysters, cockles and scallops.

"The test will not only make shellfish safer to eat, but it will also have a significant impact on global aquaculture industries as they struggle to deal with the rising problems of toxins caused by climate change.

"The test has been developed as part of a 10 million (Euro) BioCop research project led by Queen's and involving 32 international research partners and the European Commission.

"We have also signed a substantial contract with the UK-based company Neogen Europe to commercialise the idea. This will be the third such aquaculture product developed by Queen's and Neogen Europe, helping the company to develop its unique portfolio of rapid food safety tests and reinforcing Queen's reputation as a global leader in this area."

Research at Queen's will also be aided by a $500,000 (US dollars) grant from The American Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) to further develop the test in the USA so it can be conducted in laboratories and on boats as soon as the shellfish are caught, and will help drastically cut the time taken to get the catch from fishing nets to supermarket shelves.


Contact: Anne-Marie Clarke
Queen's University Belfast

Related biology news :

1. Shellfish and inkjet printers may hold key to faster healing from surgeries
2. Shellfish face an uncertain future in a high CO2 world
3. Rising acidity levels could trigger shellfish revenue declines, job losses
4. Archaeological study shows human activity may have boosted shellfish size
5. NPL unveils new equipment to make cancer treatment safer
6. Queens University Belfast plays leading role in Europe-wide tests for safer food
7. Researchers piggyback to safer reprogrammed stem cells
8. Oh baby, interventional radiology makes childbirth safer
9. In vitro antibody production enables HIV infection detection in window period -- key to safer blood
10. Einstein scientists move closer to a safer anthrax vaccine
11. New cancer drug test promises safer and more effective clinical trials
Post Your Comments:
(Date:10/1/2015)...  Biometrics includes diverse set of technologies used ... as fingerprints, eye retinas, facial patterns, voice patterns, ... has been constantly increasing in India ... addition to the most prominent popular method of ... of biometric authentication are rapidly gaining traction in ...
(Date:9/29/2015)... , Sept. 29, 2015 ... employee productivity while also saving energy , Minimized ... as Low Power Active Mode and embedded Fujitsu PalmSecure ... Fujitsu today shows that good things ... and refreshed models to its enterprise desktop and mobile ...
(Date:9/28/2015)... , September 28, 2015 ... expected to reach USD 12.03 billion by 2020, growing ... Technological advancements such as Backside Illumination (BSI) technique to ... over the forecast period.      (Logo: ... of the chip to reduce loss and, thus, reduce ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/12/2015)... Rochelle, Virginia (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2015 ... ... LLC announced today that Dr. Srini Srinivasan, has joined the firm as a ... expertise and professional stature enable them to bring extraordinary value to the company's ...
(Date:10/10/2015)... -- Le 8 octobre, l,honorable Doris O. Matsui ... Congrès sa déclaration de soutien à la troisième ... plasma (IPAW), qui se tiendra du 11 au ... Protein Therapeutics Association (PPTA) et ses sociétés ... Sensibiliser l,opinion publique mondiale autour du don de ...
(Date:10/9/2015)... Pa. and ROCKVILLE, Md. ... Inc. ("ITI"), a privately-held biotechnology company developing next ... announced that it has entered into an exclusive ... LAMP-vax products for the treatment or prevention of ... execution of the agreement, Immunomic Therapeutics will receive ...
(Date:10/9/2015)... San Francisco, CA (PRWEB) , ... October 09, 2015 , ... ... with a study that aims to better understand the relationship between weight management and ... more frequently and more accurately from participants using an iPhone app. , The uBiome ...
Breaking Biology Technology: