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Toxins 2017, 9(10), 302; doi:10.3390/toxins9100302

Rapid Detection and Identification of Mycotoxigenic Fungi and Mycotoxins in Stored Wheat Grain

Department of Food Quality and Safety, Institute for Postharvest and Food Sciences, Agricultural Research Organization, The Volcani Center, Rishon LeZion 7528809, Israel
National Residue Control Laboratory, Kimron Veterinary Institute, Bet Dagan 50250, Israel
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Laura Anfossi
Received: 24 August 2017 / Revised: 19 September 2017 / Accepted: 20 September 2017 / Published: 25 September 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Mycotoxins)
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This study aimed to assess the occurrence of toxigenic fungi and mycotoxin contamination in stored wheat grains by using advanced molecular and analytical techniques. A multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR) strategy was established for rapid identification of mycotoxigenic fungi, and an improved analytical method was developed for simultaneous multi-mycotoxin determination in wheat grains by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC/MS/MS) without the need for any clean-up. The optimized multiplex PCR method was highly specific in detecting fungal species containing species-specific and mycotoxin metabolic pathway genes. The method was applied for evaluation of 34 wheat grain samples collected from storage warehouses for the presence of mycotoxin-producing fungi, and a few samples were found positive for Fusarium and Aspergillus species. Further chemical analysis revealed that 17 samples contained mycotoxins above the level of detection, but only six samples were found to be contaminated over the EU regulatory limits with at least one mycotoxin. Aflatoxin B1, fumonisins, and deoxynivalenol were the most common toxins found in these samples. The results showed a strong correlation between the presence of mycotoxin biosynthesis genes as analyzed by multiplex PCR and mycotoxin detection by LC/MS/MS. The present findings indicate that a combined approach might provide rapid, accurate, and sensitive detection of mycotoxigenic species and mycotoxins in wheat grains. View Full-Text
Keywords: toxigenic fungi; aflatoxins; fumonisins; deoxynivalenol; wheat grains; multiplex PCR; LC/MS/MS toxigenic fungi; aflatoxins; fumonisins; deoxynivalenol; wheat grains; multiplex PCR; LC/MS/MS

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Sadhasivam, S.; Britzi, M.; Zakin, V.; Kostyukovsky, M.; Trostanetsky, A.; Quinn, E.; Sionov, E. Rapid Detection and Identification of Mycotoxigenic Fungi and Mycotoxins in Stored Wheat Grain. Toxins 2017, 9, 302.

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