Research Groups |Laboratories| Associated groups

Consortium as a whole

The consortium which includes the proposal is constituted by research groups and laboratories with extensive experience and prestige (both national and international) in the development and application of analytical methodologies for food analysis from different perspectives. The groups that make up the consortium are consolidated research groups in their respective institutions. Its high scientific and technical knowledge and the instrumental resources available, endorse the ability to face new challenges that continuously displayed as part of the food quality and safety. In addition to this experience in the field of food analysis, the profiles of the groups also encompass experts in food chemistry, processing technologies, nutrition and proteomics. This gives to the consortium a markedly multidisciplinary character, essential for food analysis and the improving of food quality and safety. The scientific-technical skills of groups, both individually and, especially, collectively are supported by its participation in the ANALISYC and ANALISYC-II programs, funded in previous scientific-technological calls from the Comunidad of Madrid. These programs were addressed with success in their challenges related to food quality and safety and where there were others and new lines of research (primarily result of the collaboration between the groups of the consortium).

The research groups and laboratories will have to apply their scientific and human resources to achieve the objectives included in the proposal and related to the priority area of development of advanced technologies for improving food quality. The equipments shared by the members of the program include all necessary techniques for any food analysis. Of particular interest is the development of sample treatment procedures (quick, simple and automated) that allow to be subsequently used by companies and laboratories of the government dedicated to food analysis. The groups that make up the consortium have high experience in this field in techniques as PLE, SPE, SPME, MIPs, MISPE, all of them also environmentally friendly and framed in the field of miniaturization, simplification and automation of processes.

The development of new technologies proposed in this program, combined with the experience of the groups of the consortium in food chemistry and technology, proteomics and toxicity studies, enables the consortium the achievement of the other objectives proposed: search for new sources of bioactive substances, mitigation of the formation of toxic compounds during processing, development of active packaging and studies of the potential toxicity of contaminants in foods.

The partner companies contribute an add value to the consortium which is another factor that guarantees its scientific-technical capacity.

Many of these companies are leaders both in the field of food industry (Group Pascual, Grupo Mahou-San Miguel, Campofrio Food Puexcal, Samtack) as in the field of analytical instrumentation and sample treatment (Novozymes Spain, Agilent, Milestone, Enantiosep, SYMTA). These companies have been interested in the products and knowledge generated in the project. With some of them exist conventions signed but in others the focus is on the results obtained, to apply the developed methods in a future. The project has also shown interest by family or local companies whose collaboration with the consortium will improve its competitiveness through the upgrading of products.

Potential of the consortium for the future

The collaboration between the groups of the proposal presents an undeniable added value. The consortium will enable the transfer of knowledge from one group to another, the collaboration between them and the infrastructure of the groups available to all its members. The existing infrastructure in each of the groups will be shared to all members of the consortium which will address complex problems that otherwise would be expensive or impractical. The knowledge of each group will be pooled to all members, which will facilitate the transfer of information, the participation of various groups in common or complementary goals and, ultimately, the progress of a theme such multidisciplinary as food quality and safety. The ability to train new researchers (by directing doctoral theses and Master thesis) is another important aspect of all research groups integrated in the project. It will enhance the mobility of students of Master and Third Cycle between the different groups involved in the project, including groups of the program and foreign partner groups and if it is possible between business-research group. This collaboration has already proved its benefits, as the groups that make up the proposal have worked or collaborated together on previous projects.

In short, the collaboration between groups of the consortium will, undoubtedly, reaffirm and consolidate the activities R&D on the development of advanced technologies for improving food quality and safety.

Research Groups


UAH-QA group: University of Alcalá – Analytical Chemistry




The group “TECHNIQUES of (MICRO)SEPARATION” at the University of Alcalá has an experience of over 30 years, develops analytical methods based on the use of separative and microseparative techniques in order to solve problems related to food safety and quality. The group is composed of one professor, four associate professors, hired postdoctoral and predoctoral, as well as, master and doctoral students.

The main lines of research are the following:

  1. Development of analytical methodologies focused on the determination, separation and identification of proteins and peptides in foods. Much of this line is focused on the study of proteins and bioactive peptides (lunasin, soymetide, various antihypertensive and anti-cancer peptides, etc.).
  2. Development of new strategies for the extraction of proteins and peptides based on the use of nanomaterials, high-intensity ultrasound, enzymes, combinational libraries of hexapeptidic ligands, etc.
  3. Search and characterization of new sources of bioactive proteins and peptides in food and waste from the food industry (fruit bones).
  4. Development of analytical methodologies of chiral separation by capillary electromigration techniques applied to the determination of interest compounds in foods and of classical and emerging organic contaminants in foods.
  5. Development of methodologies for the determination of amino acids, peptides and proteins as markers of safety and quality of food. The results have been applied to the differentiation of varieties of different crops (corn, soybean, olive, saffron, etc.) and to the detection of adulterations and frauds in oils, dairy products, soy products, meat sausages, etc.

The wide experience of the group has resulted in the development of numerous research projects, in publishing numerous works in prestigious international journals, patents, conferences and the collaboration with prestigious national and international research groups. In addition, the research group has always sought have a close contact with the business world and it has collaborated with various companies of the food sector such as Campofrío Alimentación o Leche Pascual Group and of the analytical instrumentation sector such as Agilent Technologies, Bruker and Enantiosep or others such as Novozymes (enzymes) and Bioibérica (fertilizers).

The most relevant results of the last five years in relation to the AVANSECAL-CM program can be summarized in the following milestones:

  • 41 Research articles in prestigious international journals indexed (JRC).
  • 7 Book chapters of International leading publishers.
  • 5 patents and 1 pending.
  • 44 Communications for congresses both national and international of high prestige, being remarkable the achievement of 5 awards for best poster and/or communication.

In this regard, some members of the research group have been invited as speakers in some of these international conferences, as well as, in other courses. Likewise, the research group has been represented in some of the scientific committees.

It has participated in other activities of scientific dissemination among which is the workshop “The Science Week” with two activities both as directors and lecturers entitled “The chirality in food quality control and safety” and ” functional foods, why and what for?”.

Regarding the management and defense of doctoral theses, 6 doctoral theses have been defended over the last five years, all of them with mention of European doctorate and two of them with extraordinary doctorate prize.

With regard to research projects, the research group has participated in the following projects financed in competitive calls and related to the project theme:

  • Study of the authenticity of vegetable oils through determining proteins and amino acids by electrophoretic techniques. Principal Investigator: Dr. Carmen Garcia. Funded by: Community of Madrid and University of Alcalá. Ref. CCG08-UAH / AGR-3678.
  • New analytical strategies for determining enantiomers and bioactive peptides by micro/nano separation techniques. Principal investigator: Prof. Dr. Maria Luisa Marina Alegre. Funded by: Ministry of Science and Innovation. Ref. CTQ2009-09022 / BQU.
  • Innovative analytical methodologies for food quality control and safety (ANALISYC-II). Coordinator: Prof. Dr. Maria José González Carlos. Principal Investigator of UAH-QA Group: Prof. Dr. Maria Luisa Marina Alegre. Funded by: Autonomous Community of Madrid. Ref. S-2009 / AGR-1464.
  • New strategy based on the use of protein profiles for the characterization of olives and olive oil. Principal Investigator: Dr. Maria Concepcion Garcia Lopez. Funded by: Ministry of Science and Innovation. Ref. CTQ2009-11252.
  • Advanced Analytical Methodologies by Mass Spectrometry Coupled or not to separation techniques in Liquid Phase for the determination of small and large molecules in the Control of Food Quality. Principal Investigator: Dr. Antonio Crego Navazo. Funded by: Community of Madrid and University of Alcalá. Ref. CCG10-UAH / AGR-5950.
  • Valuation of solid vegetable waste from the food industry. Principal Investigator: Dr. Maria Concepcion Garcia Lopez. Funded by: Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness. Ref. AGL2012-36362.

Finally, as already mentioned, the group has collaborated with companies that have provided samples and/or reagents required and of interest, providing the necessary information concerning the problem of the market or industry needs and collaborating in the project monitoring and dissemination of results. 


CSIC-AI Group: Institute of General Organic Chemistry



The CSIC-AI is a multidisciplinary group consisting of researchers of international relevance from three different institutes of the CSIC, the Institute of General Organic Chemistry (IQOG), the Institute of Physical Chemistry “Rocasolano” (IQFR) and the Institute of Science and Food Technology and Nutrition (ICTAN).

In addition to the singularities of each of them, all researchers of this group have a common profile that is characterized by their high specialization in the development of new methodologies of sample preparation and analysis by chromatographic separation techniques coupled, mainly, to mass spectrometry (MS). Such methods, of high sensitivity, selectivity and reliability, are characterized by their speed and low cost of implementation to the resolution of current problems related to food quality and safety.

In terms of food safety, highlight the group’s experience in the development, characterization and validation of innovative analytical methodologies for the determination of persistent organic pollutants (POPs), including polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and its metabolites, polychlorodibenzo-p-dioxins (PCDDs), polychlorodibenzo furans (PCDFs), organochlorine insecticides (DDTs), pesticides, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), brominated flame retardants, chiral separations of PCBs and toxaphenes, and of emerging contaminants used in food packaging and preservation such as phthalates and their metabolites, parabens and bisphenol A (BPA), always in highly complex matrices and with special attention to the case of food. Regarding the quality, the group has extensive experience in the development of methods for the detection of adulterations and the search of markers that guarantee the authenticity of food (i.e. honeys, oils, etc.).

The group has also extensive experience in the development of methods for the extraction of contaminants and bioactive compounds (prebiotic carbohydrates, antiobesity compounds, etc.) from foods and plants such as pressurized liquid extraction (PLE), the assisted extraction by microwave (MAE) and the ultrasound assisted extraction (UAE), as well as, in the optimization of methodologies for the extraction of volatile compounds by solid-phase microextraction (SPME), direct thermal desorption (DTD), etc.

Moreover, the group has a high competition in modeling studies of the chromatographic response that allow their estimation and in the characterization of columns for gas chromatography prepared with new suitable stationary phases for the analysis of complex samples of different nature. It is also important to highlight the group’s experience in the application of chemometric procedures for the optimization of analysis methods by GC-MS, LC-MS, GC x GC, applicable to many analytical problems that may arise in relation to the food quality and safety, and in the signal processing and application of metabolomic procedures with different objectives.

The group was created and consolidated during the two previous programs of R&D in Technologies convened by the Community of Madrid and it is based on multiple collaborations and joint projects achieved over recent years. During these years the members of the CSIC-AI group have developed synergies that have enabled them to address both issues of food safety and food quality, all of it based on the use of a common analytical and intellectual platform with the aim of join efforts and achieve better results.

The most relevant results over the last 5 years in relation with the AVANSECAL-CM program: 

  • From a quantitative point of view, the most important results obtained during the last five years (2010-2014) can be summarized in the following numerical indicators: 9 projects from the National Plan, 1 project of the Ministry of Environment, 4 regional projects (Junta de Andalucía and Community of Madrid), 1 intramural project of Frontier from CSIC, 1 Ramon y Cajal project, 96 research publications included in the SCI, 25 book chapters, 2 books, 121 conferences, 1 patent licensed, and 1 patent pending.
  • From the point of scientific results and achievements of the group, note that, thanks to the collaboration between the research group and different analytical instrumentation companies, it has been possible to dispose an analytical platform that has allowed to carry out studies such as: (i) the characterization and optimization, by experimental design, of a liquid chromatographic method for the separation of hydroxylated metabolites of PCBs (J.E. Quintanilla-Lopez et al., 2010), a collaboration between the company Thermo Scientific and the service of mass spectrometry of IQFR. (ii) The evaluation of the pesticide residues content in fruit juices using the equipment of multidimensional gas chromatography (heartcut MDGC) donated by Isaza S.A. to the research group (M.L. Ruiz del Castillo, et al., 2012). (iii) The analysis of disaccharides by complete gas chromatography in two-dimensions coupled to mass spectrometry with time of flight analyzer (GC × GC – TOFMS) thanks to the collaboration with the company Leco Instruments S.L. (M. Brokl et al., 2010). (iv) Characterization of the selectivity by the model of solvation parameters of commercial GC columns based on ionic liquids, provided by the company Supelco-Sigma-Aldrich (S. Rodriguez Sanchez et al., 2013). (v) The characterization of galactooligosaccharide mixtures provided by the company Friesland Campina Domo (O. Hernández Hernández et al., 2012).
  • Likewise, the collaborations maintained in recent years with companies in the food sector have resulted, for example, to the exploitation, by the company Exxentia Grupo Fitoterapéutico S.A., of a patent developed by the research group, entitled “phenolic extracts of almond skin containing procyanidins, propelargonidins and prodelphinidins, and their method of production” (application number P200701616 and application number of international extension of the PCT/ES2008/070104)

CSIC-AA group: CSIC – Institute of Food Science, Technology and Nutrition




The CSIC-AA group consists of researchers from the groups CHEMPROFOOD (chemical changes in processed food); and BIOCELL (Metabolism and bioactivity of phytochemicals) from the Institute of Food Science and Technology and Nutrition (ICTAN) of the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC).

The CSIC-AA group brings together expert researchers in different areas of food quality, chemical safety, functionality and nutrition constituents. In this sense, the CSIC-AA group is able to address from the characterization and traceability of food ingredients and food formulations, food processing and interactions and modifications to its constituents, as well as, the impact on nutrition and health.

On the one hand, the aim is to deepen the study of chemical modifications and interactions of food constituents during processing; with special emphasis on new compounds generated in the amino-carbonyl reaction (Maillard reaction) and of lipid oxidation, studying the beneficial/harmful properties to the consumer of the compounds formed on a risk/benefit model. Food matrices of interest are coffee and substitutes, potatoes, cereals and derivatives, oils and fats, milk-based baby food. The biological activity of the bioavailable metabolites is assessed and the mechanisms of action underlying the possible chemopreventive effect of these compounds is studied, where finally the effects of the consumption of such foods in healthy population and risk are evaluated.

The activities of the CSIC-AA research group are integrated in the program of Quality of CSIC research centers, and is certified according the regulation ISO9001 (ER-0366-/2008, AENOR) with the scope “Management and implementation of projects and research contracts in the area of food science and technology and nutrition”.

In the last 5 years, the CSIC-AA group has participated in 16 competitive research projects and 6 contracts with companies of relevance in topics related to Food Quality and Safety, of which 4 are internationally. The group is continuously participating in the European framework programs since 1996. Highlight the projects: PROMETHEUS, FONDECYT and Consolider-Ingenio (2007-2010. CSD2007-00063). CISC-AA has published 62 articles SCI, 20 non-SCI articles, 10 book chapters, 45 conferences, 1 patent licensed and has directed 4 doctoral theses. Some relevant projects are::

  • Lipid peroxidation associated disorders: LPO. 2006-2010. UE. Acción COST-B35.
  • Healthy Food Matrix Design. 2012-2015.Proyecto PIA-Anillo de investigación ACT 1105.
  • Process contaminants: Mitigation and elimination techniques for high food quality and their evaluation using sensors and simulation (PROMETHEUS). 2011-2013. Collaborative Project, contract # 265558). UE (7PM – KBBE.2010-2.4-02).
  • Improving the performance of lipid systems through controlled release of microencapsulated flavonoids. 2012-2014. FONDECYT 1120308.
  • Majority lipid oxidation compounds formed in foods: new methods for its quantitative determination and effect on Caco-2 cell models. 2011-2014. MICINN. AGL 2010-18307.
  • New antiglicant ingredients. Mechanism of action and application in food and health. 2010-2012. MICINN – AGL2010-17779 (subprogram ALI).
  • Functional polyunsaturated lipid oxidation: Analytical evaluation of the oxidation compounds with negative implications on health and strategies to delay the oxidative development. 2008-2010. MICINN. AGL 2007-62922.
  • Evaluation in vitro and in vivo of chemopreventive potential of flavanols from diet against the development of colon cancer. 2007-2010. CICYT. AGL2007-64042/ALI.
  • Preparation and evaluation of hydroxytyrosol ethers as functional food components. 2007-2010. CICYT. AGL2007-64042/ALI.
  • Use of by-products of the olive industry. Synthesis and evaluation of new antioxidants with potential application in the treatment of Parkinson’s. 2009-2012. Excellence Program of the Junta de Andalucía. AGR-5098.
  • Study of cellular bioavailability and antioxidant activity of hydroxytyrosol ethers. 2009-2012. Instituto Andaluz de Investigación y Formación Agraria y Pesquera (IFAPA). 110105090014.
  • New Ingredients and Functional Foods to Improve Health. Francisco A. Tomas Barberan (CEBAS-CSIC). 2007-2013. CSD2007-00063 Consolider-Ingenio 2010 program.
  • Preparation and evaluation of hydroxytyrosol ethers as functional food components. 2007-2010. CICYT. AGL2007-66373.
  • Green coffee and mate as dietary source of hydroxycinnamic acids. Studies in vitro (cell cultures) and in vivo (human) of bioavailability and bioactivity. 2010-2014. CICYT. AGL2010-18269.


UCM-QA group: Complutense University of Madrid




The UCM-QA research group is the consolidated research group DETERMINATION OF TRACES, SPECIATION AND PROTEOMIC (TrEP) since 1982. The research lines in which is focused on today are the following:

  • Development of analytical methodologies for the determination of regulated and emergent contaminants: PAHs, pesticides, pharmaceuticals and their metabolites, arsenic and mercury species in biological samples, foods and environmental samples.
  • Development of zinc and selenium-enriched foods. Search for bioactive species of selenium and zinc. Development of enzymatic processes of rapid extraction. Characterization and quantification by employing HPLC-ICPMS hyphenated techniques and isotope dilution. Bioavailability studies.
  • Development of analytical methods based on liquid chromatography and spectrometry of high resolution and accurate mass for evaluating the thyroid function and the determination of organic iodine compounds in food samples.
  • Development of methods of atomic bioimaging LA-ICP-MS to evaluate the distribution, accumulation and quantification by isotope dilution of platinum drugs in tissues. Development of methods of molecular bioimaging MALDI-IMS for studying lipid alterations in tissues undergoing antineoplastic therapies.
  • Development of analytical methodologies for characterization, quantitative determination of metal nanoparticles in environmental, biological and food samples. Assessment of their potential toxicity through the use of quantitative and bioanalytical omics techniques for the elucidation of the molecular mechanisms involved.
  • Study of the potential application of Se and Ag nanoparticles in clinical applications (cancer, tuberculosis) and in the field of food (food packaging, antimicrobial properties)
  • Evaluation of the toxicity and bioaccumulation of emerging and regulated contaminants (and its metabolites) using in-vitro models (cell lines, bacteria, yeast) and in vivo (zebrafish, plants). This line includes: miniaturized sample treatments for the determination of organic contaminants, pharmaceuticals, drugs, metallic elements.
  • Development of new imprinted polymers as selective adsorbents in solid-phase extraction or selective stationary phases in HPLC for the determination of organomercury compounds, pesticides and pharmaceuticals.

It is noteworthy that since 1982 the research group has enjoyed national projects (all in uninterrupted calls) and International projects (OIEA; European Community). The group has been represented in numerous scientific committees, has coordinated several European projects and has participated in numerous international conferences (through invited lectures). The research group was pioneering in Spain in the speciation of trace elements (selenium, arsenic, antimony, platinum) and continues to enjoy today a major prestige within the international scientific community.

The wide analytical experience of the group is demonstrated not only by its wide scientific production but also by its collaboration with companies, both in specific analytical services and broader collaboration through research projects. One of the most important aspects of the group is the formetive character, and therefore, one of its milestones is directing and defense of PhD thesis. During the last 5 years, 8 PhD thesis have been defended.

With respect to projects, the members of the research group has participated in recent years as principal investigators in the following projects financed in competitive calls:

  • New analytical methodologies for the study and control of safety and quality of foods “ANALISYC”. Funded by: Community of Madrid Ref.: S-0505/AGR/0312. Duration 2006-2009.
  • Biotransformation, incorporation into proteins and bioavailability of selenium in foods. Funded by: CICYT. Ref.: CTQ2008-05925. Duration 2009-2011.
  • Characterization by metallo-proteomic techniques of the interaction of Pt-based drug with proteins in cancer treatment. Applications to the study of nephrotoxicity. Funded by: DGICYT (CTQ2008-04873/BQU). Duration: 2009-2011.
  • Development of analytical tools for assessing the bioaccumulation of emerging contaminants and nanoparticles in zebrafish embryos. Funded by: Ministry of Science and Innovation BQU-010 331. Duration: 2009-2011.
  • Development and improvement of bioanalytical strategies for the identification and quantification of proteins: Application to environmental, biomedical and food analysis Funded by: CICYT. Ref. CTQ2010-18644. Duration 2011-2013.
  • Mobility, bioavailability and analytical speciation of heavy metals in contaminated areas of Chile. Role of endogenous microorganisms in the bioavailability of As. Funded by: UCM-development cooperation projects (VR: 007-11). Duration: 2011-2014.
  • Bioanalytical strategies for obtaining bioimages of platinum and determination of proteins associated with renal failure by platinum drugs. Evaluation of a nefroprotector. Funded by: MICINN (CTQ2011-24585). Duration 2012-2014.
  • Combination of techniques based on the ICPMS and proteomics to the study of trace elements and their species, related to food quality (Se, Zn) and safety (Sb). Funded by: CICYT. Ref: CTQ2011-2273.Duración 2012-2014.
  • Analytical, transcriptomics and proteomics to assess toxicity, mechanisms and bioaccumulation of food contaminants. Funded by: CICYT. Ref.: CTQ2011-28328-C02-01. Duration: 2012-2014.
  • Innovative analytical methodologies for food quality control and safety. 2010-2013. Analysic II. Funded by: Community of Madrid. Ref.: S2009AGR1464.
  • Observatoire de Recherche sur la Qualité de l’Environnement du Grand Sud-Ouest Européen (ORQUE SUDOE). Funded by: EU/FEDER. Ref: SOE3/P2/F591. Duration: 2012-2014.
  • Development of new antioxidants materials with nanoparticles of selenium for flexible packaging (nanoflexipack). Funded by: Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness. Ref.: IPT-2012-0261-420000. Duration: 2013-2014.
  • Advanced strategies to improve and control the quality and safety of foods (AVANSECAL). Funded by: Community of Madrid. Ref: S2013/AB1-3028. Duration 2014-2018.
  • Quantification and evaluation of toxic effects of nanoparticles, crop protection, medicines, and persistent organic compounds in foods. Funded by: MINECO. Ref: CTQ2014-54801-C2-1-R. Duration: 2016-2018.
  • Combination of analytical and -omics strategies to assess the application of Se and Ag nanoparticles in cancer and tuberculosis. Funded by: MINECO (CTQ2014-55711-R). Duration 2016-2018. 


UNED-QA group: National Distance Education University




The research group has extensive experience in the development of analytical methodologies for the determination of organic compounds (contaminants, drugs and various toxics), both in food and environmental samples. In the last ten years, researches have been focused on the development of new methodologies for sample treatment (extraction, purification, cleaning and pre-concentration) based on the use of natural selective molecular receptors (immune) or synthetic (MIP’s) for determining different analytes.

In addition, the research group has proven experience in the use of techniques of analysis such as chromatographic detection systems, liquids and gases, using different detectors, as is evidenced by the direction of doctoral theses in this field, a large number of articles published in international journals (Science Citation Index) and numerous communications presented at national and international conferences.

The staff member of the group has also extensive experience in the field of immunological receptors using fluorescent techniques and chemometric methods, and has worked, since its formation together, in the same lines of research utilizing the experience acquired separately.

During the last years, the research group has participated in several research projects funded by MEC (CTQ2006-15027 y AGL2009-12589) and the Community of Madrid (S-0505/AGR-0312, P2009/AGR-1464), being these last projects coordinated in which has collaborated with the Spanish research groups that make up the current research program AVANSECAL. The main objective of these projects has been the development of analytical methodologies for the determination of contaminants in food samples and the food quality assurance.

The projects funded in recent years have enabled the development and validation of analytical methods using simple and selective sample treatments for determining residues of contaminants such as pesticides, antibiotics and estrogen in samples of water and food, and the possibility to open a new line of research for the determination of other food toxics as some azo dyes.

The developed works by our research group using molecularly imprinted polymers in the preparation of the sample, have enabled us to transfer this experience to the development of new microextraction techniques, which will constitute the main contribution of the group UNED-QA in the AVANSECAL program. The development of these new strategies of sample treatment are based on the synthesis and functionalization of silica membranes to which have been inserted free radical initiators on the surface to be used as support for the grafting of thin films of molecularly imprinted polymers (MIM). This technique provides a means to modify and functionalized membranes to improve their selective properties through the selected compounds and be used in different applications: such as sensors, or as fast selective microextraction membranes. Likewise, these new strategies will enable its incorporation into online sample treatment. The determination of these components will enable the introduction in the laboratories of food quality, simple and effective alternative methods to perform routine analysis.

Besides this group, based on their experience in methods of sample treatment, has taught several courses in this area to highschool teachers of Community of Madrid (Course of sampling and sample treatment (Teacher Training Plan of Specialties of Vocational Training 2007) and Biochemistry and Biotechnology in Secondary Education: A Practical Approach (2015), as well as, training courses for researchers (New methodologies for the analysis of xenobiotics in food), organized by the ANALISYC group in September 2007.

The group has been recognized as Consolidated Research Group by the UNED (techniques and methods of chemical analysis (GTyMAQ), Ref: G30E12).

The scientific results of the research group have resulted in numerous publications (20), the development of doctoral theses (11, five of them pending defense), defenses of Diplomas of Advanced Studies (8), and defenses of Master Thesis as the initial part of the PhD thesis (3).



URJC-284 | Lab147

URJC-284 Laboratory: Laboratory of Electrochemistry and Separation Techniques (LETS)



The Laboratory of Electrochemistry and Separation Techniques (LETS) is an Associate Laboratory of Applied Research REDLABU of the Technology Support Center (CAT) of the URJC.

The research group within the program AVANSECAL currently develops its research activities in the LETS and it consists of 2 Associate Professor, 1 Doctor, 2 fellows and 1 Technician Staff, belonging to the area of knowledge of Analytical Chemistry. The group is currently conducting its research within the Department of Chemistry and Energetic Technology, Chemical and Environmental Technology, Mechanical Technology and Analytical Chemistry at the School of Experimental Sciences and Technology (ESCET). Among the research lines that take place within the group and that require the use of available instruments in the LETS include: a) Preparation, functionalization and characterization of nanostructured materials with applications in the sample preparation by solid phase extraction (SPE) and  matrix solid phase dispersion (MSPD) and in the analysis (stationary phases for HPLC and CE and electrochemical sensors), b) Development and validation of analytical methods for chiral separation with applications in fine chemistry, pharmacy and environment by HPLC-TQ-MS/MS, UHPLC-IT-MS/MS and CE-DAD; c) Development and validation of analytical methods for separation of emerging contaminants in water and food by HPLC-TQ-MS/MS, UHPLC-TI-MS/MS and CE-DAD. From the results of the research activity in relation to the lines indicated above, highlight: 30 publications in scientific journals of high impact index in the last 5 years, 2 doctoral theses, one of them based on the application of hybrid materials for the electrochemical determination of heavy metals and other in the development of new analytical methodologies based on the use of mesoporous silica and molecularly imprinted polymers for the analysis of endocrine disruptors in food. Currently, two thesis are being developed related to the use of nanostructured materials with applications in sample preparation and analysis by CE and HPLC.

Regarding the objectives of the AVAMSECAL program, LETS will give scientific and technical support mainly in the Objectives 1, 2 and 6, in particular with regard to the following aspects:

Objective 1, advanced strategies to the assessment of food safety, specifically in relation to the determination of drugs such as beta-blockers, beta-agonists and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories, will develop and optimize new analytical methods using advanced and innovative techniques such as UHPLC-IT-MS/MS and HPLC-TQ-MS/MS for the analysis of waste and methodologies SPE and MSPD as sample treatment steps using new materials as sorbents of the molecularly imprinted polymers, functionalized mesostructures silicas and different hybrid materials, with the aim of obtaining analysis strategies more sensitive, selective and robust.

In Objective 2, advanced strategies to assess the quality of food, in a similar way than Objective 1 will be studied and optimize the various necessary steps of the sample preparation using methodologies such as SPE, by using functionalized mesoporous silica to extract bioactive compounds from natural sources. Finally, within the Objective 6, Strategies for improving food safety, the methods developed in Objective 1 will be applied to assess the presence of drugs and their metabolites in various foodstuffs of animal origin. Furthermore, since the development of analytical methods for the determination of different types of compounds related to food quality and safety is a common goal of the program, it is very important to follow the good laboratory practices and implement a quality system. In this sense, thanks to the support offered by the CAT, the program will work on the implementation of that quality system.

.Laboratory-147: Center of Applied Chemistry and Biotechnology (CQAB)




In the CENTER OF APPLIED CHEMISTRY AND BIOTECHNOLOGY (CQAB), formerly called PILOT PLANT OF FINE CHEMISTRY, is a research center designed for collaborative activities University-companies, for the development of “clean” industrial processes in the areas of fine chemistry, biotechnology and waste management, focusing on high value-added products, mainly pharmaceutical and chemical products with high added value, due to the significant existing industry in the country and in the vicinity of Madrid. The center has worked since its foundation in the development of new products and processes, paying great attention to the implementation of methods of low environmental impact- what is now called “Green Chemistry” – of all proceedings.

The objectives of CQAB are:

  1. The implementation of cooperative research and development projects with private companies and public institutions promoting business innovation, through the transfer of technology and knowledge.
  2. The realization of technological services to companies and public institutions, providing highly specialized entities that outsource these services.
  3. The teaching of masters and highly specialized courses for graduates and post-graduates to develop their activity in the public and private sectors.
  4. The training of highly qualified personnel to develop a work according to the labor demand in the area of ​​Fine Chemistry and related, as well as, students from UAH and other institutions through business practices.
  5. The implementation of certifiable management systems that provide a safety workplace, environmental quality processes and trust and satisfaction for users and customers.

Technical services currently offered by the Centre:

Organic Synthesis:

  • Synthesis and development of new drugs
  • Enhanced methods for the synthesis of generic drugs
  • Synthesis of pilot batches of drugs in development, for preclinical use
  • Scaling of industrial processes of synthesis
  • Multigram synthesis of organic reagents
  • Synthesis of non-commercial products and organic intermediates
  • Integration of “green” technologies in the industrial chemical production
  • Determination of impurities in drugs and synthesis thereof
  • Synthesis of organometallic compounds
  • Total synthesis of bioactive natural products
  • Preparation of Drug Master File

Analysis and Control:

  • Determination of drugs and metabolites in raw materials, drugs and biological samples
  • Development and validation of new analytical methods
  • Stability studies of drugs in raw materials and drugs.
  • Analysis of biodiesel and other biofuels
  • Isolation and purification of bioactive compounds in natural extracts. Studies of polymorphism in drugs.
  • Identification and quantification of impurities, metabolites and trace contaminants in different matrices.
  • structure elucidation of complex matrices
  • Determination of metals in samples of different origin.
  • Analysis and development of new analytical methods of food.
  • Analysis of new materials.

Biotechnology, new materials and process engineering:

  • Synthesis of polymeric materials and biopolymer
  • Design, synthesis and study of properties of adhesives
  • Design and synthesis of new organic materials
  • Design and optimization of asphalt mixtures
  • Design and study of final formulations of polymeric materials
  • Design of processes for biodiesel obtaining
  • Synthesis of organic ligands with agrochemical applications
  • Studies of polymers, biopolymers, modified bitumen and other products by DSC, rheology and GPC
  • Design of bioreactors of pneumatic stirring, with flow models for biphasic and triphasic systems and a transfer model of matter
  • Design of treatment processes of contaminated water with persistent organic matter (pesticides, PAH, detergents, etc.), in which ozone/hydrogen peroxide is used as oxidizing system (AOP).
  • Development of models describing the interactions between substrate/micro-organism/products
  • Development of methodology to characterize the process in bioreactors, relating the evolution of biomass, the characteristics of the reactor (stirred tank, airlift) and operating conditions
  • Development of removal processes of complex organic matter, difficult to characterize analytically, that relates the physical and chemical stages of the process with the operating conditions, which allow optimize the process, especially the consumption of ozone. The model can also be used in the case of other oxidizing systems like UV/H2O2; Fe2+/H2O2 and UV/Fe2+/H2O2
  • Study of enthalpy and mass polymerization reactions and homogeneous phase
  • Synthesis and reactivity of organometallic compounds with catalytic applications

The CQAB has a database of 150 companies for which has developed research applied to molecules and processes with the the aim of putting them up in industry. Moreover, it has collaborated with more than 30 public institutions in research projects and technical services.

Throughout the 17 years of the center, we have carried out more than 244 research projects with more than 110 companies and more than 336 different technical services to companies and public institutions, which has led to the center, the management of about 14 millions of euros.



Research associated groups:

Dr. Antonio Salgado Serrano. Doctor in Chemistry since 1993. Reddy’s Laboratories in Cambridge (UK). Expert in advanced analytical techniques for the characterization of chemical compounds, particularly, Nuclear Magnetic Resonance and mass spectrometry study of molecular recognition events by NMR and MS techniques.

Dra. Merichel Plaza del Moral: Doctor since 2010 in Science and Food Technology. Department of Chemistry, University of Lund, Sweden. Expert in the development of applications of advanced analytical techniques for characterizing food ingredients, natural extracts and food, and in the development and application of advanced extraction methods to obtain functional food ingredients from natural sources.

Dr. Javier de la Mata: associate professor in the Department of Organic Chemistry and Inorganic Chemistry at the University of Alcalá. He will develop the dendrimers for the preparation of protein extracts.

Dra. Mª Soledad Pérez Coello: associate professor in the Faculty of Sciences and Chemical Technologies at the University of Castilla-La Mancha. She will cooperate in the development of analytical methods applied to oenology and the study of volatile compounds in foods and in the exchange of trainees.


The partner companies contribute to add value to the scientific-technical capacity of the consortium. Many of these companies are leaders both in the field of food industry and in the field of analytical instrumentation and sample treatment. These companies have been interested in the products and knowledge generated in the project. With some of them exist signed agreements but in others the focus is on the results obtained in order to, in the future, apply the developed methods. In the project family or local companies has also shown interest in the project, whose collaboration with the consortium will improve their competitiveness through the upgrading of products.

Food Companies

APPLUS Norcontrol S.L.U.

Bioibérica S.A.

Bodegas Palomar Sanchez S.L.

Carnes Sierra Madrid (CSM)

Corporación Empresarial Pascual

Desarrollos Alimentarios, S.A. (FRUMEN)

Friesland Campina Domo

Ganaderias Priegola

Grupo Mahou-San Miguel


Imasdea, Innovaciones y desarrollos alimentarios SLU (IMASDEA)

Industria de la Alimentación (NATAC)

Jesus Navarro S.A. (Carmencita)


Risi S.A.

Samtack S.L.

Companies of scientific instrumentation, materials and reagents

AB Sciex Spain S.L.

Agilent Technologies

AV Análisis Vínicos soluciones cromatográficas S.L.

Bruker Española, S.A.

Enantiosep GmbH

Izasa S.A.

Leco Instrumentos S.L.

Novozymes Spain S.A.

Servicio y Mantenimiento de Técnicas Instrumentales Analíticas (SYMTA)

Supelco-Sigma Aldrich Quimica S.L.

Waters Cromatografía S.A.

Other entities

Agencia Española de Seguridad Alimentaria y Nutrición (AECOSAN).
Asociación Española de Elaboradores y Envasadores de Especias y Condimentos.
Federación Española del Café (FEC)
Instituto IMDEA Agua (IMDEA)
Laboratorio de Salud Pública de Madrid (LSPM)
Sociedad Cooperativa Agraria del Losar de la Vera (Coolosar S.C.A.)