Journal of Food, Agriculture and Environment

Vol 9, Issue 3&4,2011
Online ISSN: 1459-0263
Print ISSN: 1459-0255

DNA analysis reveals potential risks for fish species conservation derived from mislabeling of dietetic complements


Ardura A.*, Jardón A., Hernández E., Martínez J. L., García-Vázquez E.

Recieved Date: 2011-04-28, Accepted Date: 2011-10-10


Accurate and complete labeling of food is a consumer’s right necessary for conscious and informed nutrition. In this study, mislabeling due to species substitution has been detected in fish-based dietetic complements using DNA-based molecular methods. These methods can be considered to design traceability and labeling systems indispensable for food safety, in order to avoid health risks, like allergies and toxicological problems; correct species identification also contributes to conservation of fishing resources, since it prevents biases in catch data and therefore wrong estimates of exploitation rates. In this work, a part of the 12S rRNA gene was employed. With this marker we have recognized the species contained in fish oils, fish flour and shark cartilage sold in Brazilian and Spanish markets. Three main undeclared and likely fraudulent compounds have been found in dietetic products: endangered and protected species like angel-shark and skate in shark cartilage; blue whiting instead of cod in cod liver oil; and chicken in products that should contain only fish. In the case of Brazilian bodo flour the danger is for human health since the bodo (Pterygoplichthys joselimainaus) is species from a family that accumulates heavy metals and contains high levels of mercury in some regions. These findings reveal the need of urgently controlling the accuracy of the labels of dietetic supplements, for preventing illegal exploitation of endangered species, like angel-shark and skate, which are near depleted, as well as health risks.


Angel-shark, dietetic products, DNA analysis, endangered species, forensically informative nucleotide sequencing, mislabeling, skate fish

Journal: Journal of Food, Agriculture and Environment
Year: 2011
Volume: 9
Issue: 3&4
Category: Food and Health
Pages: 53-56

Full text for Subscribers

Note to users

The requested document is freely available only to subscribers/registered users with an online subscription to the Journal of Food, Agriculture & Environment. If you have set up a personal subscription to this title please enter your user name and password. All abstracts are available for free.

Article purchasing

If you like to purchase this specific document such as article, review or this journal issue, contact us. Specify the title of the article or review, issue, number, volume and date of the publication. Software and compilation, Science & Technology, all rights reserved. Your use of this website details or service is governed by terms of use. Authors are invited to check from time to time news or information.

Purchase this Article:   20 Purchase PDF Order Reprints for 15

Share this article :