Legal and security requirements for the air transportation of cyanotoxins and toxigenic cyanobacterial cells for legitimate research and analytical purposes

J. S. Metcalf*, J. A.O. Meriluoto, G. A. Codd

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview Article or Literature Reviewpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Cyanotoxins are now recognised by international and national health and environment agencies as significant health hazards. These toxins, and the cells which produce them, are also vulnerable to exploitation for illegitimate purposes. Cyanotoxins are increasingly being subjected to national and international guidelines and regulations governing their production, storage, packaging and transportation. In all of these respects, cyanotoxins are coming under the types of controls imposed on a wide range of chemicals and other biotoxins of microbial, plant and animal origin. These controls apply whether cyanotoxins are supplied on a commercial basis, or stored and transported in non-commercial research collaborations and programmes. Included are requirements concerning the transportation of these toxins as documented by the United Nations, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and national government regulations. The transportation regulations for "dangerous goods", which by definition include cyanotoxins, cover air mail, air freight, and goods checked in and carried on flights. Substances include those of determined toxicity and others of suspected or undetermined toxicity, covering purified cyanotoxins, cyanotoxin-producing laboratory strains and environmental samples of cyanobacteria. Implications of the regulations for the packaging and air-transport of dangerous goods, as they apply to cyanotoxins and toxigenic cyanobacteria, are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)85-90
Number of pages6
JournalToxicology Letters
Volume163
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 25 May 2006
MoE publication typeA2 Review article in a scientific journal

Keywords

  • Cyanobacterial toxin
  • Dangerous goods
  • Legislation

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