Development of a PCR-Based Identification System for Distinguishing Tuna Species

Award Information
Agency: Department of Agriculture
Branch: N/A
Contract: 2005-33610-15491
Agency Tracking Number: 2005-00267
Amount: $74,508.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2005
Solicitation Year: N/A
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
3610 NW 42nd Terrace, Gainesville, FL, 32606
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 LeeAnn Applewhite
 Vice President
 (352) 376-9762
Business Contact
 LeeAnn Applewhite
Title: Vice President
Phone: (352) 376-9762
Research Institution
Global market demands for fresh tuna products have resulted in increased pressure on tuna fisheries worldwide. As a result, consumer driven market pressures have created significant commercial importance in the U.S. market for certain high-value tuna species. Domestic tuna harvests and harvests by foreign sources determine the supply of raw tuna available to U.S. vendors. In fact, the U.S. is largely dependent on imported fresh tuna to meet market demand. Declines in tuna fisheries, tighter catch quotas, and increased competition in global raw-tuna markets create a special and immediate concern for quality control, product security, and supply chain continuity. These issues have implications for the consumer, who is completely dependent on producers to maintain product integrity and quality especially when shortfalls in supply occur. The purpose of this study is to develop a reliable DNA-based diagnostic that will allow for the unambiguous identification of the four most commercially valuable fresh tuna species. This diagnostic is necessary in order to insure accurate species identification, proper product labeling and traceability, and to aid in the monitoring of catch quotas and suspect and/or seized product.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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