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Point of Contact (PoC) DNA testing using Loop Mediated Isothermal - FA0189

This project will explore Loop-Mediated Isothermal Amplification (LAMP), an emerging DNA-based technique for
better food testing which can provide real time monitoring and higher specificity compared to existing lab-based
methods. A portable and inexpensive diagnostic tool will prevent adulteration more effectively and help increase
customer confidence in the food chain
This project will provide an initial assessment of the potential use of LAMP technology in a food authenticity
setting collecting information about current DNA technology being used.
There will be two parts to this study separated with a break point. Part one will collect information on LAMP
through a food authenticity lens focusing particularly on meat speciation. The review will outline LAMP
technology used currently and examine the ‘fitness for purpose’ of existing LAMP tools in a food authentic
setting. Part two will follow-up on the results of Part one and aim to develop a LAMP meat speciation assay as
proof-of-concept and assess key performance characteristics, comparing against well-established PCR methods
There are two overall objectives for this project proposal:
1. A short review of LAMP for food authenticity/integrity purposes. This will include a review of grey
literature, scientific publications and general web searches to evaluate any developments in the application of
this technology to food science that might show potential to cover some of the existing gaps or to overcome
analytical difficulties. Should these be identified, they should be adapted in the project and assessed in the
application of LAMP to meat speciation. The review should also indicate where gaps exist for additional research
and development to support the use of this technology for food authenticity.
Break point – Should objective 1 reveal LAMP is being deployed, there will be no objective 2.
2. Carry out a pilot study to develop and trial a LAMP meat speciation assay. This will include developing an
initial assay for a chosen meat species and optimisation with suitable reference materials. Key performance
characteristics should be collected, providing the basis for a concluding assessment of the potential for LAMP as
a rapid POC test for food species analysis. As part of the pilot study, the performance of POC testing in relation
to existing and alternative laboratory-based approaches should be quantified wherever possible. This second
objective is dependent on the results of the review. If the review reveals that LAMP technology is already being
deployed in food authenticity, then this second objective of the project will not be required.
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2021

To: 2022

Cost: £3,035
Contractor / Funded Organisations
Food Ingredients              
Food Safety