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Food Chem Toxicol. 1991 Dec;29(12):815-9.

Effectiveness of ammonia treatment in detoxification of fumonisin-contaminated corn.

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Toxicology and Mycotoxin Research Unit, Richard B. Russell Agricultural Research Center, USDA/ARS, Athens, GA 30613.


Corn throughout the world is frequently contaminated by the fungus Fusarium moniliforme, which produces toxic fumonisins. Ammonia has been shown to detoxify effectively aflatoxins in corn and cottonseed. Since corn can be contaminated by both fumonisins and aflatoxins, we investigated the effects of ammoniation of corn either cultured with or naturally contaminated by F. moniliforme. Fumonisin B1 levels in the culture material and in naturally contaminated corn were reduced by 30 and about 45%, respectively, by the ammonia treatment. Despite the apparent reduction in fumonisin content, the toxicity of the culture material in rats was not altered by ammoniation. Reduced weight gains, elevated serum enzyme levels and histopathological lesions, typical of F. moniliforme toxicity, occurred in rats fed either the ammoniated or non-ammoniated culture material. Atmospheric ammoniation of corn does not appear to be an effective method for the detoxification of F. moniliforme-contaminated corn.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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