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Improving Extraction of Fumonisin Mycotoxins from Brazilian Corn-Based Infant Foods

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The current AOAC International methods for the determination of fumonisins have been validated for corn and cornflakes but have produced low recoveries and high variability when applied to processed corn products for infants. Hence, an investigation was undertaken to improve the extraction efficiency for fumonisins by investigating the use of different extraction solvents. Corn-based infant foods containing cornmeal, corn starch, and corn flour were purchased in the city of Campinas, state of Sao Paulo, Brazil, and were analyzed for fumonisins B1 (FB1), B2 (FB2), and B3 (FB3) following extraction with a range of solvents. Comparison of the results from each of the samples indicated that acidified 70% aqueous methanol at pH 4.0 provided the best overall performance, whereas a methanol/boric acid (pH 9.2) mixture displayed poor extraction efficiency. Extraction with acidified 70% aqueous methanol showed seven of eight test samples to be positive for FB1 (range, 30 to 6,127 μg/kg; relative SD, 4.2 to 51.7%), two of eight samples to be positive for FB2 (range, 53 to 1,738 μg/kg; relative SD, 4.5 to 5.3%), and one of eight samples to be positive for FB3 (575 μg/kg). For samples in which extraction with phosphate-buffered mixtures (pH 3) proved superior, the method suffered from poor chromatography due to interfering compounds. The findings indicate that matrix interferences play a significant role in the extractability, cleanup, and chromatography of the fumonisins.


Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: PROMEC Unit, Medical Research Council, P.O. Box 19070, Tygerberg, 7505, South Africa 2: Instituto de Tecnologia de Alimentos (ITAL), NĂșcleo de Microbiologia, Caixa Postal 139, CEP 13073-001, Campinas, Brazil

Publication date: May 1, 2003

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