Fumonisin B1 (FB1) is a common contaminant of corn worldwide and is responsible for several diseases of animals. In the preparation of tortillas, corn is treated with lime (producing nixtamal) that when heated hydrolyzes at least a portion of the FB1
to the aminopentol backbone (AP1), another known toxin. This study analyzed the amounts of FB1 and AP1 in tortillas and nixtamal from two communities in the central highlands of Guatemala where corn is a major dietary staple (Santa Maria de Jesus, Sacatepequez,
and Patzicia, Chimaltenango). The amounts of FB1 and AP1 in tortillas from Santa Maria de Jesus were, respectively, 0.85 ± 2.0 and 26.1 ± 38.5 μg/g dry weight (mean ± SD), and from Patzicia were 2.2 ± 3.6 and 5.7 + 9.4 μg/g dry
weight. Less than 6% of the tortillas from both locations contained ≥ 10 μg FB1/g dry weight; whereas, 66% of the samples from Santa Maria de Jesus and 29% from Patzicia contained ≥ 10 μg AP1/g dry weight. The highest amount of AP1 (185 μg/g
dry weight) was found in tortillas from Santa Maria de Jesus. The highest amounts of FB1 were 6.5 and 11.6 μg/g dry weight in tortillas from Santa Maria de Jesus and Patzicia, respectively. The mean concentration of FB1 in nixtamal was significantly higher in Santa
Maria de Jesus compared to Patzicia. Surprisingly, AP1 was not detected in any of the nixtamal samples. The human impact of exposure to these amounts of fumonisins is not known. However, based on findings with other animals, where corn is a dietary staple, long-term consumption
of FB1 and AP1 (especially at ≥ 10 &mgrg/g of the diet) may pose a risk to human health.
Document Type: Short Communication
Toxicology and Mycotoxin Research Unit, R. B. Russell Agricultural Research Center, USDA/ARS, Athens, Georgia 30604, USA 2:
Instituto de Nutricion de Centro America Y Panama, Calzada Roosevelt, 09001 Guatemala, C. A. 3:
3Department of Biochemistry, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia 30322, USA
Publication date: October 1, 1999
More about this publication?
IAFP members must first sign in on the right to access full text articles of JFP First published in 1937, the Journal of Food Protection®, is a refereed monthly publication. Each issue contains scientific research and authoritative review articles reporting on a variety of topics in food science pertaining to food safety and quality. The Journal is internationally recognized as the leading publication in the field of food microbiology with a readership exceeding 11,000 scientists from 70 countries. The Journal of Food Protection® is indexed in Index Medicus, Current Contents, BIOSIS, PubMed, Medline, and many others.
Print and online subscriptions are available to Members and Institutional subscribers. Online visitors who are not IAFP Members or journal subscribers will be charged on a pay-per-view basis. Information can be obtained by calling +1 800.369.6337; +1 515.276.3344; fax: +1 515.276.8655, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or Web site: www.foodprotection.org