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  1. Science & Research (Food)

Regulatory Fish Encyclopedia (RFE)

Browse the index to images and data in the Regulatory Fish Encyclopedia by:

Market Name | Common Name | Scientific Name | Family Name

The Regulatory Fish Encyclopedia (RFE) is a compilation of data in several formats that assists with the accurate identification of fish species. It was developed by FDA's RFE Team of scientists at the Seafood Products Research Center (SPRC, Seattle District), and the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN) to help federal, state, and local officials and purchasers of seafood identify species substitution and economic deception in the marketplace.

The RFE includes for each of a number of commercially relevant fish species for sale in the U.S. market high-resolution photographs as their scanned digital images (jpeg format) of whole fish and their marketed product forms (including fillets, steaks, or whole crustaceans) which may be used for visual comparison to a whole fish in question (or its marketed product form). In addition there is chemical taxonomic information consisting of species-characteristic biochemical patterns which may be compared quantitatively to patterns obtained by an appropriate laboratory analysis of the fish species specimen in question. Currently the RFE includes tissue protein patterns determined by Isoelectric Focusing (IEF) electrophoresis and CO1 Mitochondrial DNA sequence patterns determined by DNA Barcoding.

The standard IEF Gel layout (image file: "Anatomy of a Gel") and a more detailed description of the RFE are available.

This DISCLAIMER pertains to the use of the RFE and to use of the images and data therein.

DNA-based Seafood Identification

The Seafood List is a searchable compendium of approximately 1800 species of finfish and shellfish. It includes for each species Acceptable FDA Market name(s), Scientific Common name, Scientific name, as well as Vernacular names for cross reference. The entries for those species in the RFE are linked back to the RFE data pages. Additionally this document provides guidance to industry in the selection of approvable names for marketing seafood in the U.S.

NOTE: Some RFE Species Scientific Names have changed since the RFE was posted. Please check The Seafood List for the most current nomenclature.

NOTE: Some E-mail addresses printed in the descriptor tags on the RFE images are now obsolete. For addition information, contact Fred Fry. Also, Scientific names for some species are changed at various times. For additional information, see the Disclaimer page.

The RFE Isoelectric Focusing (IEF) Data Pages (including Position Normalized Gel Lane Pattern Schematics) comprise an Index of Isoelectric Focusing Gel* Lane Banding Pattern Peak Reports in the Regulatory Fish Encyclopedia resulting from Densitometry, Integration, and Migration Position Normalization (Position Calibration against pI Marker Standards) from IEF experiments utilizing the Standard RFE IEF Gel Format. These reports contain data for large plate IEF analyses for specimens from 76 species (of the 94 species currently in the RFE). These data are linked from the Species Browse Pages and from the Page 5 sections of the species IEF Data pages.

* Isoelectric Focusing Methodology is based on the AOAC Official Methods of Analysis (1995), AOAC Official Method 980.16: "Identification of Fish Species - Thin Layer Polyacrylamide Gel Isoelectric Focusing Method".

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