FOOD TOXICOLOGY

SHE Level 4
SCQF Credit Points 20.00
ECTS Credit Points 10.00
Module Code MHB223577
Module Leader Janice Taylor
School School of Health and Life Sciences
Subject Biological and Biomedical Sciences
Trimester
  • A (September start)

Pre-Requisite Knowledge

Nutrition and Public Health M3B423290, Food Commodities M3D623592, Food Science M3D623579 Food , Analysis of Food M3F120539, Biotechnology M3C523575, Molecular Diagnostics M3C723501.

Summary of Content

The module investigates the many diverse aspects of natural and man-made toxins with respect to food and the food chain. Additionally the module will look at the identification and characterisation of food toxins.

Syllabus

This module will investigate the many aspects of food toxicology including : Natural plant toxicants , their chemical structure, stability during processing and mans physiological response to them will be discussed. Microbiological toxins , their incidence, structure, role and function will also be considered together with methods to prevent their production in foods. Man-made toxins that pollute the food chains and water supply will be examined Foods in Excess ; many normal components of the diet are essential. Large variations in consumption can, however, prove to be hazardous. Examples are hypervitaminosis (e.g. excess vitamin A) and excess consumption of cholesterol and minerals. Medical implications of these dietary factors will be investigated. The nature and properties of modern food packaging material s will be discussed in relation to their overall performance and their potential to leach materials (e.g. plasticisers) into foods, together with current legislation covering these issues. The role of industrial effluents and radioactive discharges in the food chain will be investigated and the strict legal controls that govern these will be examined Effects of food processing on food s will be investigated in relation to (i) destruction of food toxins and (ii) generation of anti-nutritional factors during processing. Detection Methods: current and new emerging technologies for the detection of toxins in foods will be investigated and the principles involved in these technologies discussed.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module the student should be able to:1. Describe the natural toxic constituents of plant and animal foods and toxins of microbial origin.2. Understand and evaluate the growing global problem of food adulteration.3. Describe the role of inorganic compounds and agrochemicals in the food chain.4. Explain the role of industrial effluents and radioactive discharges in the food chain.5. Understand how nutrients can be harmful when ingested in excess.6. Assess how the body controls absorption and excretion of food toxins.7. Evaluate how food processing generates harmful components in foods.8. Review current and new emerging technologies for the detection of toxins in foods.

Teaching / Learning Strategy

The major strategy for module delivery will utilise lectures which be supported by a robust student led seminar series. Participation and contribution in seminars will be encouraged: to organise, develop and communicate knowledge and to develop personalised learning. The teaching strategy will progressively develop the use of textbooks, journals and internet for sources of information. Students will be given directed reading in appropriate research areas. Additionally, students will undertake a data interpretation exercise, which involves the critical analysis of a current aspect of food toxicology literature and the ability to synthesize and process data.

Indicative Reading

Principles of Food Toxicology (2013) Pussa T. Second Edition ISBN 978-1466504103 CRC Press Introduction to Food Toxicology (2009) Shibamoto T and Bjeldanes, L. F ISBN 978-0123742865. Elsevier Mycotoxins and animal foods (1991) Smith J E & Henderson R .ISBN CRC Press, Florida. Pearson's Composition and Analysis of Foods . (1991) Kirk, R S and Sawyer, R . ISBN 978-0582409101 Longman: Harlow Reading lists will be provided for each topic area based on scientific papers and peer reviews

Transferrable Skills

The major strategy for module delivery will utilise lectures and seminars. The teaching strategy will progressively develop the use of textbooks, journals and internet sources for information. The students will develop critical analysis skills in data analysis exercises and will develop their research, student centred learning and presentation during the seminar series. The students will be encouraged to participate in the Food Tox discussion board, developed as a blog to include current up to date information on aspects of Food Toxicology

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Seminars (FT) 11.00
Assessment (FT) 10.00
Tutorials (FT) 11.00
Independent Learning (FT) 146.00
Lectures (FT) 22.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Course Work 02 n/a 18.00 n/a Data Analysis
Course Work 01 n/a 12.00 n/a Seminar
Exam 01 3.00 70.00 35% Unseen written exam