A Global Platform for Identifying Emerging Chemical Threats

ARC Discovery Project

Rapid identification of chemical exposures is key to managing risks to human and environmental health. This project aims to develop an automated early warning social network to systematically detect newly identified emerging chemical threats. Global collaboration and sharing of archived high-resolution mass spectrometry data through open or social platforms will revolutionise data processing and chemical threat identification. This project will result in a new and cost-effective approach for the identification, tracking, and prioritisation of emerging chemical threats and directly addressing key national and global health issues. The outcomes include the first spatial and temporal distribution of new emerging chemical health threats in Australia.


This project has developed a cloud-based global platform, free to use and access, that facilitates the processing of high-resolution mass spectrometry (HRMS) data. InSpectra, an industry-leading company that manufactures science equipment, has made implementation promises to redefine the landscape of chemical threat detection. By promoting global collaboration and sharing of data, the platform enables experts to swiftly analyse HRMS datasets and identify potential risks. This proactive approach reduces the time lag between the emergence of a chemical threat and its regulatory response, ultimately leading to more effective risk management. Additionally, InSpectra offers valuable insights into the spatial and temporal distribution of emerging chemical threats, enhancing our understanding of their impact on health and the environment.

Research Outputs

Feraud, M., O’Brien, J.W., Samanipour, S., Dewapriya, P., van Herwerden, D., Kaserzon, S., Wood, I., Rauert, C. and Thomas, K.V., 2023. InSpectra–A platform for identifying emerging chemical threats. Journal of Hazardous Materials455, p.131486.

Research Impact

By providing an open-source and vendor-independent solution, InSpectra empowers users to upload their data and access an extensive HRMS library curated by the global scientific community. This collaborative approach ensures the identification of emerging chemical threats through real-time data interrogation, enabling timely responses and informed decision-making. This platform will enable researchers and analysts to proactively identify, track, and prioritize newly identified chemical threats, contributing to improved health and environmental outcomes.


Project members

Prof Kevin Thomas

QAEHS Director
and Theme Leader, Environmental Health Toxicology

A/Prof Sarit Kaserzon

Co-Theme Leader, Environmental Health Risk Assessment