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Food Addit Contam Part A Chem Anal Control Expo Risk Assess. 2019 Jan;36(1):163-174. doi: 10.1080/19440049.2018.1547425. Epub 2018 Dec 5.

Chemical and toxicological alterations of zearalenone under ozone treatment.

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a State Key Laboratory of Food Science and Technology, School of Food Science and Technology, National Engineering Research Center for Functional Food, Synergetic Innovation Center of Food Safety and Quality Control , Jiangnan University , Wuxi , Jiangsu , P.R. China.
b Research and development department , Guangzhou GRG Metrology &Test Co., Ltd , Guangzhou , Guangdong , P.R. China.


Our work mainly studied the elimination of zearalenone (ZEN) from corn flour by ozone treatment. We found four degradation products, after separation and identification by UPLC-ESI-QTOF-MS, named as Compound 1 (m/z 335.18), Compound 2 (m/z 351.19), Compound 3 (m/z 321.19) and Compound 4 (m/z 367.18). Then, one main transformation pathway was predicted on the basis of molecular weight and the reaction mechanism of ozone. We had also detected two of the degradation products by our modified UPLC-MS/MS method in real samples-contaminated corn flour. We screened the toxicity of the parent ZEN compound as well as the ozone induced decomposition products with BALB/c mice to evaluate the safety of our method in vivo. Therefore, aqueous ozone was demonstrated to effectively degrade ZEN and chemical structure alternations of ZEN after ozone treatment were predicted in both pure ZEN and real contaminated-corn flour samples. Considering the presence of the by-products formed, differences in the toxic effects on mice exposed to ZEN before and after the ozone treatment emphasise the significance of further study on the quality and toxicity of real food samples after ozone treatment.


Ozone; Toxicity tests; UPLC-ESI-QTOF-MS; UPLC-MS/MS; Zearalenone

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