A2) Further development and validation of the methodology of thin layer chromatography coupled with umuC assay for genotoxicity and YES for hormonal effects for the identification of bioactive trace substances in consumer articles and drinking water.
- Robustness of HPTLC-umuC has been improved: positive control responses are consistent over time
- Limits of detection for known genotoxicants were evaluated in comparison to regulatory thresholds, including thresholds of toxicological concern (TTC)
- Depending on assumptions of food contact and laboratory conditions, many chemicals can be detected below stringent TTC
- Potency of genotoxicants varies by many orders of magnitude, making it impractical to detect all substances at TTC levels
- HPTLC-bioassays are the most sensitive versions of assays investigated in this study
A3) Data base for bioactivities in samples from consumer articles and in drinking water/raw water samples.
More than 90 samples of food packaging, drinking water, and related materials were provided by project partners. The HPTLC-bioassay parameters and results remain at the Ecotox Centre. They may be accessed to investigate what kinds of samples are bioactive, and under what conditions.
A4) Identification of bioactive trace substances in consumer goods and drinking water, which may require a detailed risk assessment.
Paperboard example from KLZH:
B1) In this project, there is cooperation with the cantonal enforcement (KL SG, KL ZH) as well as with drinking water suppliers (IWB, Basel), which provide the researchers with corresponding sample material. This could lead to starting points for the application of the methodology in food and drinking water control.
- samples were received from KLZH, KLSG, IWB, ZWV, SQTS
- employees were hosted from KLZH and SQTS at the Ecotox Centre to learn HPTLC techniques and perform experiments
There is continued interest from the cantons and industrial partners to implement HPTLC-bioassays in their own laboratories, or have a contract laboratory available. Interaction with the Food Packaging Forum (FPF). The list of suspect chemicals was guided in part by the FCCdb, created by the Food Packaging Forum, and conversations with its authors. The FCCdb contains known ingredients in packaging manufacturing.
B2, B3) Within the framework of this project, bioactive substances could be identified for which risk management measures may be necessary after detailed risk assessment.
- CMIT was identified in printed paperboard.
- CMIT was previously not known by cantonal authorities to be present in these paperboard samples
- BfR guidelines limit amount of CMIT that can be in extracts of paper products
- Other bioactive compounds have been investigated but remain unidentified
- Demonstration that HPTLC fractionation consistently reduces the number of chemicals by >95%, compared to the unfractionated sample
C1) Results should be presented in knowledge transfer and at a national conference.
Alan J. Bergmann, Teresa Mairinger, Daniel Olbrich, Eszter Simon, Juliane Hollender, Andreas Schönborn, Etienne Vermeirssen. June 2020. Sensitive detection of toxic chemicals in food packaging. Webinar hosted by Food Packaging Forum. Zürich, Switzerland.
Alan J. Bergmann, Andrea Schifferli, Nadine Bramaz, Kasia Aturi, Eszter Simon, Juliane Hollender, Andreas Schönborn, Inge Werner, Etienne Vermeirssen. Toward identifying genotoxicants in paper products with an HPTLC based bioassay. Presentation to Department of Environmental Chemistry, Eawag. December 2020. Dübendorf, Switzerland.
Alan J. Bergmann, Kasia Aturi, Daniel Olbrich, Eszter Simon, Juliane Hollender, Andreas Schönborn, Etienne Vermeirssen. February 2021. Sensitive detection of toxic chemicals in food packaging. Knowledge transfer webinar hosted by Swiss Federal Food Safety and Veterinary Office. Bern, Switzerland.
Alan J. Bergmann, Andrea Schifferli, Nadine Bramaz, Kasia Aturi, Eszter Simon, Juliane Hollender, Andreas Schönborn, Inge Werner, Etienne Vermeirssen. HPTLC-bioassays, a review. Plus updates in ToxSISTEM: toward identification of toxicants in food packaging and drinking water. October 2021. Online seminar to Ecotox Centre. Dübendorf, Switzerland.
Alan J. Bergmann, Beat J. Brüschweiler, Eszter Simon, Gregor McCombie, Celine Muñoz, Maurus Biedermann, Juliane Hollender, Andreas Schönborn, Etienne Vermeirssen. HPTLC-bioassays for the detection and identification of toxic NIAS in food packaging. Abstract for poster presentation submitted to ILSI food packaging meeting. May 2022.
Anticipated: Seminar to EPFL Environmental Engineering Institute (planned March 2022)
Alan J. Bergmann, Eszter Simon, Andrea Schifferli, Andreas Schönborn, Etienne Vermeirssen. Chemical safety of food packaging: (HPTLC-)bioassays for detection and identification of toxic substances. May 2020. Society for Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, Europe. Online.
Alan J. Bergmann, Rebekka Merki, Vera Baumgartner, Heidi Moor, Etienne Vermeirssen, Thomas Gude. Challenging chemicals in genotoxicity assays: GLYMO as an example. Abstract for poster presentation submitted to ILSI food packaging meeting. May 2022.
Anticipated: Non-target analysis meeting:
Kasia Aturi, Alan Bergmann, Juliane Hollender. 2022. Novel nontarget pipeline deploying data mining for linking environmental exposures to toxic effects. Durham North Carolina, United States.
C2) The results of this project will be published in scientific journals.
Alan J. Bergmann, Eszter Simon, Milena Breitenbach, Gregor McCombie, Celine Muñoz, Maurus Biedermann, Andreas Schönborn, Etienne Vermeirssen. HPTLC genotoxicity assays are best option for detecting hazards in food packaging at TTC levels. To submit early 2022. Possibly: Food Additives and Contaminants A (Kapitel 2 des Schlussberichts).
Alan J. Bergmann, Eszter Simon, Milena Breitenbach, Gregor McCombie, Celine Muñoz, Maurus Biedermann, Andreas Schönborn, Etienne Vermeirssen. HPTLC genotoxicity assay for detecting hazards in food packaging at thresholds of toxicological concern (Kapitel 3 des Schlussberichts).
Alan J. Bergmann, Kasia Aturi, Andreas Schönborn, Juliane Hollander, Etienne Vermeirssen. HPTLC EDA: Toward identification of toxic substances in food packaging with HPTLC-bioassays. (Kapitel 4 des Schlussberichts).