November 2, 2011
COLLEGE PARK, Md.FDA is offering a training course to help lab analysts better identify and archive botanicals. The three-day course, set for Nov. 30 to Dec. 2, 2011,will introduce students to terms, techniques and literature FDA uses to identify unknown botanical material as a basis for further study.
Students are expected to learn the value of voucher specimens, the diagnostic features of ground plant material, and where to go to get information on botanical nomenclature, literature, botany and plant anatomy. At the end of the course, FDA said students should be able to write a brief monograph identifying the different cell types present in the sample and use the Internet to gather additional information on plant taxonomy.
"Microscopic Identification of Botanicals" will also include a review of the basic theory of the optical microscope. FDA said students will become comfortable purchasing, maintaining and using compound light microscopes, brightfield and polarized light for the analysis of plant material.
FDA called the course intensive with an equal mix of lecture and hands on-training. Maximum class size is 12, and the course fee is $1,500 (USD). The course will be taught by Stanley Cichowicz, a retired FDA employee, and Steven Casper, Ph.D., Division of Dietary Supplement Programs, FDA.
The course will be conducted at the International Food Safety Training Laboratory (IFSTL), a 4,600-square-feet laboratory facility located at the University of Maryland.
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