Development of Portable Marine Toxin Biosensors for Shellfish Industry
Award last edited on: 7/14/2021

Sponsored Program
Awarding Agency
Total Award Amount
Award Phase
Solicitation Topic Code
Principal Investigator
Jyotindra Shakya

Company Information

E-Lambda LLC

2072 NW Woodland Drive
Corvallis, OR 97330
   (408) 203-4494
Location: Single
Congr. District: 04
County: Benton

Phase I

Contract Number: 2020-00811
Start Date: 6/4/2020    Completed: 4/30/2022
Phase I year
Phase I Amount
Hazardous marine toxin especially domoic acid poses the greatest threat to the shellfish industry which can cost hundreds of millions of dollars loss and damage marine ecosystem. However traditional laboratory based chemical analysis methods such as gas chromatography with mass spectroscopy (GC-MS) are ill suited for detecting marine toxin in shellfish as they are expensive time-consuming and incapable of conducting on-site testing. The overarching goal of this Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) project is to develop a rapid ultra-sensitive cost-effective and portable biosensing technique to detect track and predict the threat of marine toxin which will minimize the economic loss to the shellfish industry and enhance seafood safety. In this SBIR project E-Lambda LLC and Oregon State University will develop diatomaceous earth microfluidic channel devices that can perform thin layer chromatography (TLC) to separate marine toxins and other hazardous chemicals from simple blended shell fish samples and simultaneously detect trace level of marine toxins at the sensitivity of several part- per-billion using surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS). In addition an advanced machine- learning algorithm based on quaternion principal component analysis in tandem with support vector regression (QPCA-SVR) will be applied to analyze the TLC-SERS data to suppress potential contaminant interference and obtain highly accurate quantification results. Compared with traditional GC-MS analytical methods the proposed TLC-SERS sensing technique can provide similar level of sensitivity and comparable quantification accuracy but with dramatic reduction of cost and time and not to mention the unprecedented on-site testing capability. The proposed portable marine toxin biosensors will enhance seafood safety and benefit many U.S. coastal community customers in numerous ways: 1) private seafood testing companies will reduce the cost by 95% compared with traditional GC-MS techniques; 2) seafood processing plants can directly conduct in-house testing and obtain results within 15 minutes which will save the sample preparation and shipping cost and more critically the near-real-time results will minimize the loss of harvesting and processing toxic shellfish for both the seafood companies and fishermen; and 3) government agencies and university researchers will be able to monitor the marine toxin much more efficiently and more frequently which can track the change of marine toxin and provide longer warning time before the toxin spikes. We must point out that the portable sensing technology similar to universal chemical analytical tools like GC-MS can be readily applied to detect other hazardous chemicals in various food samples simply by training the machine-learning algorithm with new experimental results. In other words the technology developed under this SBIR project will benefit the entire food industry. From the commercial standpoint the market of global food safety testing is forecasted to reach $14 billion by 2020.The proposed portable biosensor technology has the potential to occupy a significant position in this market. The commercialization efforts will be carried out through the partnership with the OSU Venture Accelerator which is an incubator that provides important support services to entrepreneurs in emerging ventures development. In addition we will collaborate with WestCoast Seafood Processors Association for the initial product testing.

Phase II

Contract Number: ----------
Start Date: 00/00/00    Completed: 00/00/00
Phase II year
Phase II Amount