Send to

Choose Destination
Mol Nutr Food Res. 2007 Aug;51(8):925-31.

The intestine as a possible target for fumonisin toxicity.

Author information

Laboratoire de Pharmacologie-Toxicologie, INRA, Toulouse, France.


Fumonisins constitute a family of toxic and carcinogenic mycotoxins produced by Fusarium verticillioides (formerly F. moniliforme), a common fungal contaminant of corn. Contamination with fumonisin B(1) (FB(1)) is of concern as this mycotoxin causes various animal diseases. The gastrointestinal tract represents the first barrier against ingested chemicals, food contaminants, and natural toxins. Following ingestion of fumonisin-contaminated food or feed, intestinal epithelial cells could be exposed to a high concentration of toxin. In this review, we have summarized the data dealing with the impact of FB(1) on the intestine. Although FB(1 )is poorly absorbed and metabolized in the intestine, it induces intestinal disturbances (abdominal pain or diarrhea) and causes extra-intestinal organ pathologies (pulmonary edema, leukoencephalomalacia, or neural tube defects). The main toxicological effect of FB(1) reported in vivo and in vitro is the accumulation of sphingoid bases associated with the depletion of complex sphingolipids. This disturbance of the sphingolipid biosynthesis pathway could explain the other observed toxicological effects such as an alteration in intestinal epithelial cell viability and proliferation, a modification of cytokine production, and a modulation of intestinal physical barrier function.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley
Loading ...
Support Center