Sensors 2011, 11(12), 11692-11716; doi:10.3390/s111211692
Review

The Need and Potential of Biosensors to Detect Dioxins and Dioxin-Like Polychlorinated Biphenyls along the Milk, Eggs and Meat Food Chain

1 Animal Production Systems Group, Wageningen University, P.O. Box 338, 6700 AH Wageningen, The Netherlands 2 Livestock Research, Wageningen University and Research Centre, P.O. Box 65, 8200 AB Lelystad, The Netherlands 3 RIKILT Institute of Food Safety, Wageningen University and Research Centre, P.O. Box 230, 6700 AE Wageningen, The Netherlands 4 Eye Research Institute Maastricht, Department of Ophthalmology, University Hospital Maastricht, P.O. Box 5800, 6202 AZ Maastricht, The Netherlands
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 17 October 2011; in revised form: 2 December 2011 / Accepted: 14 December 2011 / Published: 15 December 2011
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sensing of Organic Pollution in Soil, Air, Water and Food)
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Abstract: Dioxins and dioxin-like polychlorinated biphenyls (DL-PCBs) are hazardous toxic, ubiquitous and persistent chemical compounds, which can enter the food chain and accumulate up to higher trophic levels. Their determination requires sophisticated methods, expensive facilities and instruments, well-trained personnel and expensive chemical reagents. Ideally, real-time monitoring using rapid detection methods should be applied to detect possible contamination along the food chain in order to prevent human exposure. Sensor technology may be promising in this respect. This review gives the state of the art for detecting possible contamination with dioxins and DL-PCBs along the food chain of animal-source foods. The main detection methods applied (i.e., high resolution gas-chromatography combined with high resolution mass-spectrometry (HRGC/HRMS) and the chemical activated luciferase gene expression method (CALUX bioassay)), each have their limitations. Biosensors for detecting dioxins and related compounds, although still under development, show potential to overcome these limitations. Immunosensors and biomimetic-based biosensors potentially offer increased selectivity and sensitivity for dioxin and DL-PCB detection, while whole cell-based biosensors present interpretable biological results. The main shortcoming of current biosensors, however, is their detection level: this may be insufficient as limits for dioxins and DL-PCBs for food and feedstuffs are in pg per gram level. In addition, these contaminants are normally present in fat, a difficult matrix for biosensor detection. Therefore, simple and efficient extraction and clean-up procedures are required which may enable biosensors to detect dioxins and DL-PCBs contamination along the food chain.
Keywords: dioxins; biosensor; polychlorinated biphenyls; food chain

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MDPI and ACS Style

Chobtang, J.; De Boer, I.J.M.; Hoogenboom, R.L.A.P.; Haasnoot, W.; Kijlstra, A.; Meerburg, B.G. The Need and Potential of Biosensors to Detect Dioxins and Dioxin-Like Polychlorinated Biphenyls along the Milk, Eggs and Meat Food Chain. Sensors 2011, 11, 11692-11716.

AMA Style

Chobtang J, De Boer IJM, Hoogenboom RLAP, Haasnoot W, Kijlstra A, Meerburg BG. The Need and Potential of Biosensors to Detect Dioxins and Dioxin-Like Polychlorinated Biphenyls along the Milk, Eggs and Meat Food Chain. Sensors. 2011; 11(12):11692-11716.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Chobtang, Jeerasak; De Boer, Imke J. M.; Hoogenboom, Ron L. A. P.; Haasnoot, Willem; Kijlstra, Aize; Meerburg, Bastiaan G. 2011. "The Need and Potential of Biosensors to Detect Dioxins and Dioxin-Like Polychlorinated Biphenyls along the Milk, Eggs and Meat Food Chain." Sensors 11, no. 12: 11692-11716.

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