Phylogene Specialized Analyses Laboratory Mass Spectrometry

Food and Environment

Food and environmental regulations require detection and quantification of various compounds (chemicals, toxins, proteins, ….) at lower and lower concentrations.

When it is to follow a probiotic strain, to detect a bacterial toxin, a cyanotoxin or a mycotoxin, or to detect contaminants like Bisphenol A, melamine, or food allergens, we remain at your disposal lien vers formulaire de contact)to discuss our analytical procedures. Feel free to contact us for any information that may be helpful to know how mass spectrometry   can be of use for your projects.

Services and technologies

Monitoring of microbiological strains

The control of bioprocess implying either industrial bacteria or yeast or probiotics is a difficult challenge. Indeed, physiological properties of microorganisms may vary with time or environmental conditions.

LC-MS/MS is a powerful tool able to deeply analyze both proteome and metabolome of those strains in their complex environment. This knowledge will enhance bioprocesses control.


Bacterial, fungal or algal toxins are of main concern for Food Industry and Environment.

Algal toxins are harmful when drinking contaminated fresh waters (Cyanotoxins) or eating contaminated shells or fishes (Marine Toxins).

LC-MS/MS technique, recognized as a reference method by EU Regulation N°15/2011, allows detection and quantification of more algal toxins than other methods such as ELISA.

Mycotoxins, produced by fungi, may contaminate raw materials, such as grains, fruits or milk, commonly used for both food and feed.

LC-MS/MS technique is able to detect and quantify several mycotoxins in a same time with a better sensitivity/specificity ratio.

Bacterial toxins are difficult to detect since it has to be done in complex matrices such as food products.

New LC-MS/MS equipments with higher resolutions are overcoming this issue.


The use of Bisphenol A is forbidden in Europe for plastic infant feeding bottles manufacturing since the publication of EU directive N°2011/8. The presence of several other chemicals contaminants or drugs residues in food products is also regulated.

LC-MS/MS technique allows multiplex detection of those compounds.

Food allergens detection using MRMHR

Controlling food allergens is a major issue for food industry since cross contaminations may occur both during raw materials and food products manufacturing. As no regulatory levels exists and as low allergen concentrations may be sufficient to cause adverse reactions for allergic consumers, analytical methods have to reach the lowest detection limits.

The monitoring of peptides produced for each targeted protein by MS fragmentation (Multiple Reaction Monitoring) allows the absolute quantification of allergens.

In case of allergen detection, targeted peptides will be chosen to be specific of allergenic species to be detected. Sensitivity of LC-MS/MS technique is close to the microgram per gram of sample. Its high specificity prevents from false positive results. Furthermore, and in opposition of other techniques, LC-MS/MS allows detection of multiple allergens in a same assay.


Cross contamination of raw products by unexpected ingredients of other vegetal or animal origin, or replacement by an ingredient of lower value are two issues Food industry may encounter.

To identify animal or vegetal origin of foodstuffs, methods such as PCR or ELISA are the most commonly used. But, due to the degradation of either DNA or proteins during food processing, they are hardly applicable to the analysis of highly processed products such as canned food. Furthermore, those methods are mainly qualitative and then cannot distinguish between voluntary (fraud) or accidental (cross contamination) presence of unexpected ingredients.

Proteins denaturation is not an issue for LC-MS/MS, this technology is applicable to the analysis of cooked food products. Furthermore, LC-MS/MS methods such as MRMHR or SWATH-MS will allow unexpected ingredients determination in Food products.

Custom Services

Our teams are fully available to define best strategies for your project and answer to your questions.