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Toxins 2015, 7(12), 4852-4867;

Results of a Saxitoxin Proficiency Test Including Characterization of Reference Material and Stability Studies

VERIFIN (Finnish Institute for Verification of the Chemical Weapons Convention),Department of Chemistry, P.O. Box 55, A. I. Virtasen aukio 1, University of Helsinki,FI-00014 Helsinki, Finland
Federal Department of Defence, Civil Protection and Sport, SPIEZ LABORATORY, Austrasse 1,CH-3700 Spiez, Switzerland
ChemStat, Aarstrasse 98, CH-3005 Bern, Switzerland
Finnish Environment Institute, Marine Research Centre, Erik Palménin aukio 1,FI-00560 Helsinki, Finland
Finnish Environment Institute, Marine Research Centre, Hakuninmaantie 6, FI-00430 Helsinki, Finland
Marine Institute, Marine Environment and Food Safety Services, Rinville, Oranmore,County Galway, Ireland
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Andreas Rummel
Received: 18 June 2015 / Revised: 12 August 2015 / Accepted: 13 August 2015 / Published: 25 November 2015
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A saxitoxin (STX) proficiency test (PT) was organized as part of the Establishment of Quality Assurance for the Detection of Biological Toxins of Potential Bioterrorism Risk (EQuATox) project. The aim of this PT was to provide an evaluation of existing methods and the European laboratories’ capabilities for the analysis of STX and some of its analogues in real samples. Homogenized mussel material and algal cell materials containing paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP) toxins were produced as reference sample matrices. The reference material was characterized using various analytical methods. Acidified algal extract samples at two concentration levels were prepared from a bulk culture of PSP toxins producing dinoflagellate Alexandrium ostenfeldii. The homogeneity and stability of the prepared PT samples were studied and found to be fit-for-purpose. Thereafter, eight STX PT samples were sent to ten participating laboratories from eight countries. The PT offered the participating laboratories the possibility to assess their performance regarding the qualitative and quantitative detection of PSP toxins. Various techniques such as official Association of Official Analytical Chemists (AOAC) methods, immunoassays, and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry were used for sample analyses. View Full-Text
Keywords: paralytic shellfish poisoning toxins; saxitoxin; proficiency test; dinoflagellate; mussel paralytic shellfish poisoning toxins; saxitoxin; proficiency test; dinoflagellate; mussel

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Harju, K.; Rapinoja, M.-L.; Avondet, M.-A.; Arnold, W.; Schär, M.; Luginbühl, W.; Kremp, A.; Suikkanen, S.; Kankaanpää, H.; Burrell, S.; Söderström, M.; Vanninen, P. Results of a Saxitoxin Proficiency Test Including Characterization of Reference Material and Stability Studies. Toxins 2015, 7, 4852-4867.

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