Team:UC Davis


UC Davis iGEM 2014

OliView: An Enzyme Based Electrochemical Biosensor Developed for Olive Oil Quality Control

In a report conducted by the UC Davis Olive Oil Center, it was found that more than 65% of the extra virgin olive oil on shelves around the US is defective due to poor handling or deliberate adulteration with extraneous, non-beneficial oils. The most prevalent and identifying defect in olive oil is rancidity, indicating the absence of expected health benefits such as antioxidants and polyunsaturated fats. This summer, we engineered a biosensor capable of quickly and cheaply evaluating rancidity defects in the chemical profile of olive oil, providing both consumers and retailers with a means of ensuring product quality.

The project consisted of four components: Protein Engineering, Electrochemistry, Development of a user friendly potentiostat and signal processing. We were able to provide proof of concept for each component of our device. With each component combined, we had a fully functional electrochemical biosensor that could distinguish rancid olive oil from fresh.

Read full version of our practice and policy report