Food Toxicity Detection Using C. elegans

Award Information
Agency:
Department of Defense
Amount:
$100,000.00
Program:
SBIR
Contract:
W81XWH-10-C-0213
Solitcitation Year:
2009
Solicitation Number:
2009.3
Branch:
Army
Award Year:
2010
Phase:
Phase I
Agency Tracking Number:
O093-H24-3231
Solicitation Topic Code:
OSD09-H24
Small Business Information
Agave BioSystems, Inc.
P.O. Box 100, Ithaca, NY, 14850
Hubzone Owned:
Y
Woman Owned:
N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
Y
Duns:
022552900
Principal Investigator
 Kathie Berghorn
 Staff Scientist
 (607) 272-0002
 kberghorn@agavebio.com
Business Contact
 Noe Salazar
Title: President
Phone: (512) 656-6200
Email: nsalazar@agavebio.com
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract
Current toxicity testing of foodstuffs involves mass spectrometry analysis which requires a >24 h turnaround time in deployed military operations. This length of time is dangerous for personnel. Rapid identification of toxic industrial chemicals (TICs) in food using a sensor that is biologically-based and easy to use eliminates that danger and would provide exactly what is needed for toxicity evaluation of food. In this Phase I, Agave BioSystems proposes to develop a rapid and accurate biosensor using mutant C. elegans to evaluate toxicity in food. This biosensor will use the nematode C. elegans as the model system and measure Green fluorescent protein (GFP) that has been linked to inducible promoters of genes responsive to specific stressors. Extended shelf life will be possible because the dauer stage within the lifecycle of C. elegans leaves the worm in stasis for extended periods of time until growth is resumed with improved conditions. By measuring the GFP response in a mixed population of mutant C. elegans, the outcome should be an accurate and sensitive assessment of chemical toxicity in food.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

Agency Micro-sites

US Flag An Official Website of the United States Government