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Molds and Mycotoxin Content of Cereals in Southeastern Romania

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Fungal species and toxin contamination were determined in 110 cereal samples (54 maize, 35 wheat, and 21 barley) collected in the southeastern part of Romania from 2002 to 2004. The most frequent fungal contaminants belonged to Aspergillus and Fusarium, and maize was the most contaminated cereal. The main toxigenic species identified were Aspergillus flavus, Aspergillus fumigatus, Fusarium graminearum, and Fusarium culmorum in all cereals and Fusarium verticillioides in maize. The presence of aflatoxin B1 (AFB1), deoxynivalenol (DON), zearalenone (ZEA), fumonisins, and ochratoxin A was determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. More than 90% of the samples were contaminated with at least one toxin. Around 30% of maize samples were contaminated with AFB1, and in 20% of these samples the level of toxin exceeded that allowed by European Union regulations. In 48 and 42% of samples, levels of DON and ZEA, respectively, exceeded those allowed by the European Union. Neither fumonisins nor ochratoxin A were found in samples from any year or cereal. These results indicate that cereals produced in Romania have a particular pattern of mycoflora and mycotoxin contamination because DON and ZEA in addition to AFB1 were found.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Institute of Biology and Animal Nutrition, Calea Bucuresti 1, 077015 Balotesti, Romania 2: Mycotoxicology Unit, National Veterinary School of Toulouse, 23 chemin des capelles, 31076 Toulouse cedex, France 3: Faculty of Biology, University of Bucharest, 36-46 M. Kogalniceanu Boulevard, 70709 Bucharest, Romania 4: Mycotoxicology Unit, National Veterinary School of Toulouse, 23 chemin des capelles, 31076 Toulouse cedex, France;, Email: jd.bailly@envt.fr

Publication date: March 1, 2009

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    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.

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