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Marine and Freshwater Toxins Analysis

Third Joint Symposium and AOAC Task Force Meeting

University of Puget Sound, Tacoma, WA, USA

June 18th – June 22nd 2012

This international meeting on analytical methods for the marine and freshwater toxins will include sessions on shellfish toxins and fish toxins. Our Puget Sound venue is timely due to the 2011 emergence of diarrhetic shellfish poisoning (DSP) here in the Pacific Northwest, the first outbreak of DSP in the US. A full day will be devoted to the (DSP implicated) okadaic acids and other lipophilic toxins. Paralytic shellfish toxins will also be covered, including coverage of recently approved official methods. Exciting progress has also been made on rapid tests for ciguatoxins, and cyanotoxins are now getting renewed focus in the US. These and other marine and freshwater toxins will be covered; onsite lab sessions on rapid tests for seafood toxins will address shellfish toxins and also histamine in finfish. Offsite training on LC-MS/MS methodology for lipophilic marine toxins will be available the following week on June 25 and 26, 2012 at the Washington State Public Health Lab near Seattle. Reduced rates for conference attendees and/or students will be available. The conference is co-chaired by James Hungerford, FDA, USA and Ana Gago-Martinez, Univ. Vigo and EU Reference Laboratory, Marine Biotoxins, Spain. Click here to read about recent developments in marine toxins and methods validation Marine and Freshwater Toxins Feb 2012

Please link here to for more details, also information on registration, accommodation, abstract, and other information on these marine and freshwater toxins events

Task Force Overview. The Task Force is an international group of experts on marine and freshwater toxins, and stakeholders who have a strong and practical interest in the development and validation of methods for detection of these toxins. Marine toxins and freshwater toxins require extensive monitoring programs and have a significant economic and human health impact. Although there is a strong and global need for improved testing methods for these toxins, the demand for new, officially validated methods has not been met. The Task Force addresses this need by focusing efforts, setting priorities, and identifying economic and intellectual resources. The group will establish methods priorities, determine fitness for purpose, identify and review available methodology, recommend methodology for validation, and identify complementary analytical tools. Once appropriate analytical methodology has been identified or developed, the Task Force will identify financial and technical resources necessary to validate the methodology.

Task Force Communications. Most communications in the Task Force do not require in-person meetings. Electronic (internet) communications are more efficient and address most concerns in time commitment, travel funding restrictions, and internationally, time zone limitations.

Task Force membership does require active AOAC membership - Use the following link for membership information. Electronic mail is used extensively for much Task Force business and related discussions . Occasional face-to-face meetings and conference calls are also held in conjunction with AOAC meetings (regional and national) appropriate toxin symposia, stakeholder-related meetings, etc. Although considered optional and not built into the Terms of Reference, the Task Force has also organized international level conferences and, in recent years, many laboratory training sessions. See “Whats New” at this website for updates on these and other events.

Contact: Task Force Co-chairs Jim Hungerford at, or phone (425) 483-4894 and Ana Gago-Martinez at
AOAC Liaison Anita Mishra at or phone (301) 924-7077 Ext 131.

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Co-chairs Hungerford and Gago-Martinez wish to thank José Luis Rivas López, Hermes Sistemas S.L., for updating the Marine and Freshwater Toxins webpage and establishing its new domain location