Mediterranean Extra Virgin Olive Oil Omics: profiling and fingerprinting – MedOOmics

Submission summary

Olive oil is one of the oldest vegetable oils, and is the major constituent of the Mediterranean diet. Its consumption has also spread remarkably outside the Mediterranean Basin. It is considered as a commodity and nutraceutical product that has a huge economic impact in the Mediterranean countries. Nowadays, consumers awareness concerning quality, safety and traceability of food products, in general, and olive oil in particular, is increasing. More information is required in terms of labeling, and also legislation frameworks are in constant updating, aiming to maintain and improve the overall quality of this product. In this regard issues related to olive oil authenticity and traceability are considering crucial.
MedOOmics (Mediterranean Extra Virgin Olive Oil Omics: profiling and fingerprinting) aims to profile and fingerprint monovarietal extra virgin olive oils made of the most typical varieties from different regions of four countries, addressing issues related to varietal and geographical traceability and authentication. The objectives can be summarized as 1) the establishment of chemical markers of geographical and varietal traceability and 2) establish a pattern comprising the “markers of authenticity” to be used in the identification of olive oil adulterations. The novelty of MedOOmics is based on an integrated approach, comprising a deep knowledge of some of the least studied olive oil varieties in the Mediterranean Basin.
Olive oils profiling will be achieved by the determination of several class of compounds in a multicomponent analysis: trace elements by ICP-MS; stable isotope ratio analysis by EA-IRMS and/or GC/C-IRMS; volatile and phenolic compounds, tocopherols, pigments, sterols, fatty acids and triacylglicerols by chromatographic techniques- GC-FID, GC/MS or HPLC-DAD, LC/MS. Olive oils fingerprinting, focus on recognition of patterns, will comprise NMR techniques, including multidimensional NMR, Infrared Spectroscopy (mean infrared (MIR) and near infrared (NIR)) and Raman Spectroscopy. Appropriated statistical analysis will be performed, namely chemometric tools using multivariate descriptive and predictive methods.
MedOOmics activities will span 8 working packages, gathering four countries, Portugal as coordinator, France, Turkey and Tunisie. Seven research teams will be involved with different skills and complementary competences enabling to establish an international network related with Olive Oil Omics thematic.
Altogether, this proposal will contribute to the implementation of a “MedOOmics database” comprising the chemical markers of varietal and geographical origin for the most relevant EVOOs from the Mediterranean countries encompassed in this work, which constitute a valuable tool in the field of “Food Authentication”.

Project coordinator

Madame Maria João Cabrita (University of Evora)

The author of this summary is the project coordinator, who is responsible for the content of this summary. The ANR declines any responsibility as for its contents.


Cukurova University
Adana Science and Technology University
Institut Supérieur de Biotechnologie de Sfax
Universidade Nova de Lisboa
University of Evora University of Evora
AMU Aix Marseille Université - Laboratoire d'instrumentation et sciences analytiques - Equipe MEthodologie, Traitement de l’Information en Chimie Analytique

Help of the ANR 267,998 euros
Beginning and duration of the scientific project: August 2016 - 36 Months

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