The detection of mycotoxins in food is urgently needed because they pose a significant threat to public health. In this study, we developed a quantitative detection platform for mycotoxins by integrating multicolor upconversion nanoparticle barcode technology with fluorescence image processing using a smartphone-based portable device. The multi-colored upconversion nanoparticle encoded microspheres (UCNMs) were used as encoded signals for detecting different mycotoxins simultaneously. After indirect competitive immunoassays using UCNMs, images could be captured by the portable device and the camera of a smartphone. Then, a self-written Android application, which is an HSV-based image recognition program installed on a smartphone, analyzed images and offered a reliable and accurate result in less than 1 min. The quantitative detection platform of mycotoxins proved to be feasible and reliable, and the limit of detection (LOD) was 1 ng, which was lower than that obtained from standard assays. This study demonstrates a method for detecting mycotoxins in food and other point of care analysis.
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