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Co-extra: GM and non-GM supply chains: their CO-EXistence and TRAceability

Contact: David Lee

Co-extra is a pan-European project investigating aspects of co-existence and traceability of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in our food chain. NIAB is involved in work that transcends the whole issue of GMO: from field-base studies (see Simon Kightley[x1] ) to lab-based work using DNA to detect and identify GMO within samples.

In the latter studies we have investigated methods to optimize the extraction of DNA from different food matrices for GMO testing.

Furthermore, we have investigated the use of loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) as an alternative to PCR. These studies have addressed aspects of LAMP that may hinder its use for GMO detection: specificity, sensitivity and target size. Results have shown that the method appears highly specific, very sensitive, and like other isothermal amplification methods reported, able to amplify from crude DNA samples. This suggests that it may be more consistent than PCR for DNA amplification and therefore more amenable for use in the detection of GMOs from food samples.

Funding: The European Commission through the Sixth Framework Programme under the Food Quality and Safety Priority.

Collaborating Organizations: see