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Toxins, Volume 5, Issue 7 (July 2013), Pages 1219-1331

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Research

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Open AccessArticle Degradation of Aflatoxin B1 during the Fermentation of Alcoholic Beverages
Toxins 2013, 5(7), 1219-1229; doi:10.3390/toxins5071219
Received: 18 April 2013 / Revised: 13 June 2013 / Accepted: 14 June 2013 / Published: 28 June 2013
Cited by 7 | PDF Full-text (580 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) is a contaminant of grain and fruit and has one of the highest levels of carcinogenicity of any natural toxin. AFB1 and the fungi that produce it can also contaminate the raw materials used for beer
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Aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) is a contaminant of grain and fruit and has one of the highest levels of carcinogenicity of any natural toxin. AFB1 and the fungi that produce it can also contaminate the raw materials used for beer and wine manufacture, such as corn and grapes. Therefore, brewers must ensure strict monitoring to reduce the risk of contamination. In this study, the fate of AFB1 during the fermentation process was investigated using laboratory-scale bottom and top beer fermentation and wine fermentation. During fermentation, cool wort beer samples and wine must samples were artificially spiked with AFB1 and the levels of AFB1 remaining after fermentation were analyzed. AFB1 levels were unchanged during both types of fermentation used for beer but were reduced to 30% of their initial concentration in wine. Differential analysis of the spiked and unspiked wine samples showed that the degradation compound was AFB2a, a hydrated derivative of AFB1. Thus, the results showed that the risk of AFB1 carryover was still present for both types of beer fermentation but was reduced in the case of wine fermentation because of hydration. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mycotoxins in Food and Feed)
Figures

Open AccessArticle Fluoxetine Induced Suicidal Erythrocyte Death
Toxins 2013, 5(7), 1230-1243; doi:10.3390/toxins5071230
Received: 23 May 2013 / Revised: 28 June 2013 / Accepted: 4 July 2013 / Published: 15 July 2013
Cited by 51 | PDF Full-text (418 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The antidepressant fluoxetine inhibits ceramide producing acid sphingomyelinase. Ceramide is in turn known to trigger eryptosis the suicidal death of erythrocytes characterized by cell shrinkage and exposure of phosphatidylserine at the erythrocyte surface. Ceramide is effective through sensitizing the erythrocytes to the pro-eryptotic
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The antidepressant fluoxetine inhibits ceramide producing acid sphingomyelinase. Ceramide is in turn known to trigger eryptosis the suicidal death of erythrocytes characterized by cell shrinkage and exposure of phosphatidylserine at the erythrocyte surface. Ceramide is effective through sensitizing the erythrocytes to the pro-eryptotic effect of increased cytosolic Ca2+ activity ([Ca2+]i). In nucleated cells, fluoxetine could either inhibit or stimulate suicidal death or apoptosis. The present study tested whether fluoxetine influences eryptosis. To this end cell volume was estimated from forward scatter, phosphatidylserine exposure from annexin V binding, hemolysis from hemoglobin release and [Ca2+]i from Fluo-3 fluorescence intensity. As a result, a 48 h exposure of erythrocytes to fluoxetine (≥25 µM) significantly decreased forward scatter, increased annexin V binding and enhanced [Ca2+]i. The effect on annexin V binding was significantly blunted, but not abolished, in the absence of extracellular Ca2+. In conclusion, fluoxetine stimulates eryptosis, an effect at least in part due to increase of cytosolic Ca2+ activity. Full article
Open AccessArticle The Use of Feed Additives to Reduce the Effects of Aflatoxin and Deoxynivalenol on Pig Growth, Organ Health and Immune Status during Chronic Exposure
Toxins 2013, 5(7), 1261-1281; doi:10.3390/toxins5071261
Received: 10 May 2013 / Revised: 3 July 2013 / Accepted: 4 July 2013 / Published: 17 July 2013
Cited by 17 | PDF Full-text (225 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Three feed additives were tested to improve the growth and health of pigs chronically challenged with aflatoxin (AF) and deoxynivalenol (DON). Gilts (n = 225, 8.8 ± 0.4 kg) were allotted to five treatments: CON (uncontaminated control); MT (contaminated with 150 µg/kg
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Three feed additives were tested to improve the growth and health of pigs chronically challenged with aflatoxin (AF) and deoxynivalenol (DON). Gilts (n = 225, 8.8 ± 0.4 kg) were allotted to five treatments: CON (uncontaminated control); MT (contaminated with 150 µg/kg AF and 1100 µg/kg DON); A (MT + a clay additive); B (MT + a clay and dried yeast additive); and C (MT + a clay and yeast culture additive). Average daily gain (ADG) and feed intake (ADFI) were recorded for 42 days, blood collected for immune analysis and tissue samples to measure damage. Feeding mycotoxins tended to decrease ADG and altered the immune system through a tendency to increase monocytes and immunoglobulins. Mycotoxins caused tissue damage in the form of liver bile ductule hyperplasia and karyomegaly. The additives in diets A and B reduced mycotoxin effects on the immune system and the liver and showed some ability to improve growth. The diet C additive played a role in reducing liver damage. Collectively, we conclude that AF and DON can be harmful to the growth and health of pigs consuming mycotoxins chronically. The selected feed additives improved pig health and may play a role in pig growth. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mycotoxins in Food and Feed)
Open AccessArticle Differences in the Regulation of Ochratoxin A by the HOG Pathway in Penicillium and Aspergillus in Response to High Osmolar Environments
Toxins 2013, 5(7), 1282-1298; doi:10.3390/toxins5071282
Received: 17 May 2013 / Revised: 19 June 2013 / Accepted: 8 July 2013 / Published: 19 July 2013
Cited by 11 | PDF Full-text (881 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Penicillium verrucosum, P. nordicum and Aspergillus carbonarius are three important ochratoxin A producing species. P. verrucosum is in addition able to produce citrinin. It has been shown earlier that P. nordicum is adapted to NaCl rich environments like salt rich dry cured
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Penicillium verrucosum, P. nordicum and Aspergillus carbonarius are three important ochratoxin A producing species. P. verrucosum is in addition able to produce citrinin. It has been shown earlier that P. nordicum is adapted to NaCl rich environments like salt rich dry cured foods or even salines. In this organism, the biosynthesis of ochratoxin A plays an adaptive role in this habitat. P. verrucosum generally can be found on cereals, but occasionally also on salt rich dry cured foods. In contrast A. carbonarius usually cannot be found in NaCl rich environments, but it occurs in another environment with high concentration of solutes, e.g., in sugar rich substrates like grapes and grape juices. Usually osmotic challenging conditions activate the HOG MAP kinase signal cascade, which in turn activates various osmo-regulated genes. In the current analysis, it could be demonstrated that in case of P. nordicum and P. verrucosum the NaCl induced production of ochratoxin A is correlated to the phosphorylation status of the HOG MAP kinase. Just the opposite was true for A. carbonarius. In this case, also higher amounts of NaCl in the medium lead to an increased phosphorylation status of HOG, but no increase in ochratoxin biosynthesis was observed. In contrast to the Penicillia, higher NaCl concentrations lead to a rapid cessation of growth by A. carbonarius. High glucose concentrations have much less impact on growth and the phosphorylation of HOG. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in Ochratoxins Research)
Open AccessArticle Development and Evaluation of Monoclonal Antibodies for the Glucoside of T-2 Toxin (T2-Glc)
Toxins 2013, 5(7), 1299-1313; doi:10.3390/toxins5071299
Received: 5 June 2013 / Revised: 11 July 2013 / Accepted: 12 July 2013 / Published: 19 July 2013
Cited by 8 | PDF Full-text (311 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The interactions between fungi and plants can yield metabolites that are toxic in animal systems. Certain fungi are known to produce sesquiterpenoid trichothecenes, such as T-2 toxin, that are biotransformed by several mechanisms including glucosylation. The glucosylated forms have been found in grain
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The interactions between fungi and plants can yield metabolites that are toxic in animal systems. Certain fungi are known to produce sesquiterpenoid trichothecenes, such as T-2 toxin, that are biotransformed by several mechanisms including glucosylation. The glucosylated forms have been found in grain and are of interest as potential reservoirs of T-2 toxin that are not detected by many analytical methods. Hence the glucosides of trichothecenes are often termed “masked” mycotoxins. The glucoside of T-2 toxin (T2-Glc) was linked to keyhole limpet hemocyanin and used to produce antibodies in mice. Ten monoclonal antibody (Mab)-producing hybridoma cell lines were developed. The Mabs were used in immunoassays to detect T2-Glc and T-2 toxin, with midpoints of inhibition curves (IC50s) in the low ng/mL range. Most of the Mabs demonstrated good cross-reactivity to T-2 toxin, with lower recognition of HT-2 toxin. One of the clones (2-13) was further characterized with in-depth cross-reactivity and solvent tolerance studies. Results suggest Mab 2-13 will be useful for the simultaneous detection of T-2 toxin and T2-Glc. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Toxin Detection)
Open AccessArticle Short Toxin-like Proteins Attack the Defense Line of Innate Immunity
Toxins 2013, 5(7), 1314-1331; doi:10.3390/toxins5071314
Received: 15 May 2013 / Revised: 16 July 2013 / Accepted: 16 July 2013 / Published: 23 July 2013
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (2204 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
ClanTox (classifier of animal toxins) was developed for identifying toxin-like candidates from complete proteomes. Searching mammalian proteomes for short toxin-like proteins (coined TOLIPs) revealed a number of overlooked secreted short proteins with an abundance of cysteines throughout their sequences. We applied bioinformatics and
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ClanTox (classifier of animal toxins) was developed for identifying toxin-like candidates from complete proteomes. Searching mammalian proteomes for short toxin-like proteins (coined TOLIPs) revealed a number of overlooked secreted short proteins with an abundance of cysteines throughout their sequences. We applied bioinformatics and data-mining methods to infer the function of several top predicted candidates. We focused on cysteine-rich peptides that adopt the fold of the three-finger proteins (TFPs). We identified a cluster of duplicated genes that share a structural similarity with elapid neurotoxins, such as α-bungarotoxin. In the murine proteome, there are about 60 such proteins that belong to the Ly6/uPAR family. These proteins are secreted or anchored to the cell membrane. Ly6/uPAR proteins are associated with a rich repertoire of functions, including binding to receptors and adhesion. Ly6/uPAR proteins modulate cell signaling in the context of brain functions and cells of the innate immune system. We postulate that TOLIPs, as modulators of cell signaling, may be associated with pathologies and cellular imbalance. We show that proteins of the Ly6/uPAR family are associated with cancer diagnosis and malfunction of the immune system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel Properties of Well-Characterized Toxins)

Review

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Open AccessReview Mini-Review: Novel Therapeutic Strategies to Blunt Actions of Pneumolysin in the Lungs
Toxins 2013, 5(7), 1244-1260; doi:10.3390/toxins5071244
Received: 31 May 2013 / Revised: 25 June 2013 / Accepted: 27 June 2013 / Published: 15 July 2013
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (1135 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Severe pneumonia is the main single cause of death worldwide in children under five years of age. The main etiological agent of pneumonia is the G+ bacterium Streptococcus pneumoniae, which accounts for up to 45% of all cases. Intriguingly, patients can
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Severe pneumonia is the main single cause of death worldwide in children under five years of age. The main etiological agent of pneumonia is the G+ bacterium Streptococcus pneumoniae, which accounts for up to 45% of all cases. Intriguingly, patients can still die days after commencing antibiotic treatment due to the development of permeability edema, although the pathogen was successfully cleared from their lungs. This condition is characterized by a dramatically impaired alveolar epithelial-capillary barrier function and a dysfunction of the sodium transporters required for edema reabsorption, including the apically expressed epithelial sodium channel (ENaC) and the basolaterally expressed sodium potassium pump (Na+-K+-ATPase). The main agent inducing this edema formation is the virulence factor pneumolysin, a cholesterol-binding pore-forming toxin, released in the alveolar compartment of the lungs when pneumococci are being lysed by antibiotic treatment or upon autolysis. Sub-lytic concentrations of pneumolysin can cause endothelial barrier dysfunction and can impair ENaC-mediated sodium uptake in type II alveolar epithelial cells. These events significantly contribute to the formation of permeability edema, for which currently no standard therapy is available. This review focuses on discussing some recent developments in the search for the novel therapeutic agents able to improve lung function despite the presence of pore-forming toxins. Such treatments could reduce the potentially lethal complications occurring after antibiotic treatment of patients with severe pneumonia. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pore-Forming Toxins)

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