A simple clean-up method was developed for the simultaneous determination of pesticide residues in livestock products by GC-MS/MS. The pesticide residues were extracted with acetonitrile–ethanol (1 : 1), and matrix components such as adipose were effectively eliminated by a combination of refrigerated centrifugation, dispersive solid-phase extraction, and multifunctional column chromatography. In this method, samples are treated quickly and easily without the need for gel-permeation chromatography. Among 131 pesticides tested, 115 showed recovery within the range from 70 to 120%, with relative standard deviations of less than 15%. The quantification limits for the 115 pesticides in livestock products were 0.001 to 0.01 μg/g.
Food poisoning due to ingestion of a puffer fish occurred in Nagasaki Prefecture, Japan, in October 2008, causing neurotoxic symptoms similar to those of tetrodotoxin (TTX) poisoning. In the present study, we identified the species, toxicity, and toxins using the remaining samples of the causative puffer fish. The puffer fish was identified as smooth-backed blowfish Lagocephalus inermis by nucleotide sequence analysis of the 16S rRNA and cytochrome b gene fragments of muscle mitochondrial DNA. The residual liver sample showed toxicity as high as 1,230 mouse unit (MU)/g by bioassay and TTX was detected by liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry analysis. We therefore concluded that the food poisoning was due to TTX caused by consumption of the toxic liver of L. inermis. This is the first report that the liver of L. inermis caught in Japanese waters is strongly toxic, with levels exceeding 1,000 MU/g. In this context, we re-examined the toxicity of L. inermis collected off the coast of Japan. Of 13 specimens assayed, 12 were toxic, although the toxicity varied markedly among individuals and tissues. Because the intestine and ovary of L. inermis have been considered non-toxic, it is particularly noteworthy that these organs were determined to be toxic, with a maximum toxicity of 43.6 MU/g and 10.0 MU/g, respectively. Furthermore, kidney, gallbladder, and spleen, whose toxicity has been unknown, were frequently found to be weakly toxic with levels ranging from 10 to 99 MU/g. Therefore, further study is needed to re-examine the toxicity of smooth-backed blowfish L. inermis in the coastal waters of Japan.
A LC-MS/MS screening assay of multi-class antibiotics was developed for 19 residual antibiotics in livestock samples. Sample preparation employed the QuEChERS (Quick, Easy, Cheap, Effective, Rugged and Safe) approach using 0.5% formic acid in acetonitrile–methanol (8 : 2), with salting-out using magnesium sulfate, trisodium citrate and sodium chloride. Recovery values from 5 different livestock samples ranged from 45.5 to 121.6%, and the RSDs were under 18% at two concentration levels. The limit of quantification values of 19 analytes were under 10 μg/kg in all livestock samples, and the procedure can detect almost all analytes under the MRL. Screening capability was confirmed by employing spiked samples. This new screening assay for residual antibiotics in livestock samples is expected to be useful for routine laboratory tests.
Changes in egg protein contents by cooking were measured with an ELISA kit using Tris–HCl buffer in model foods including cake, meatballs, pasta and pudding made with whole egg, egg-white and egg-yolk. The egg protein contents were lowest in the deep-fried model foods of cakes and meatballs. Ovalbumin (OVA) was undetectable (<1 μg/g) and ovomucoid (OVM) was lowest in pouched meatballs, suggesting that processing temperature and uniform heat-treatment affect the detection of egg protein. Furthermore, egg protein contents were below 6 μg/g in the pouched meatballs and pasta made with egg-yolk, and OVA and OVM were not detected by Western blotting analysis with human IgE from patients' serum. On the other hand, processed egg proteins were detected with an ELISA kit using a surfactant and reductant in the extract buffer.
In order to reduce the health risk associated with food poisonings caused by natural toxins, it is necessary to implement risk management strategies based on previous poisoning data and risk factors. In present study, we statistically analyzed natural toxin food poisoning (NTFP) data published by the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare from 1989 to 2010 in Japan and reviewed the trends of NTFP for each natural toxin hazard. Since 1989, the number of incidents of NTFP in each year has not been reduced. Prevention and control are needed to reduce the risk of NTFP. The major site for all hazards was “at home”. This result suggested that consumer education is critically important to inform about NTFP occurrence, preventive measures and emergency treatments. Furthermore, countermeasures for NTFPs which have never occurred in the past in Japan should be considered, because of the increasing variety of imported foods and changes resulting from the inerease of sea temperature with global warming.
A method for the quantification of histamine in fish and fish products using tandem solid-phase extraction and fluorescence derivatization with fluorescamine was previously developed. In this study, we improved this analytical method to develop an official test method for quantification of histamine in fish and fish products, and performed a single laboratory study to validate it. Recovery tests of histamine from fillet (Thunnus obesus), and two fish products (fish sauce and salted and dried whole big-eye sardine) that were spiked at the level of 25 and 50 μg/g for T. obesus, and 50 and 100 μg/g for the two fish products, were carried out. The recoveries of histamine from the three samples tested were 88.8–99.6% with good repeatability (1.3–2.1%) and reproducibility (2.1–4.7%). Therefore, this method is acceptable for the quantification of histamine in fish and fish products. Moreover, surveillance of histamine content in food on the market was conducted using this method, and high levels of histamine were detected in some fish products.