This proposal, CiguaTools has been developed to deal with a serious emerging problem thought by many to be caused by climate change. Put in basic terms, strains of harmful marine algae which produce deadly toxins and were only associated with tropical climates are emerging in European waters. Due to the complexity of the food chain these toxins accumulate in fish. While the fish themselves show no obvious signs of contamination eating such fish can have very serious health implications. Ciguatera fish poisoning (CFP) is a major economic and social problem worldwide, with up to 500,000 people being poisoned each year. The associated illness caused by this can last for many months. The causative toxins are known as ciguatoxins (CTX).
A consortium comprising experts in marine toxins, rapid screening test development and a group of SMEs specialising in producing vital reference standards, test kits and validating both to international standards has been formed to deliver the following objectives:
The identification of the CTX toxin profiles present in EU waters which will lead to the production of vital reference standards.
The production of a fast and simple method for high throughput analysis for CTX toxin presence in fish destined for consumption.