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Open AccessArticle

Occurrence and Seasonal Variations of Aflatoxin M1 in Milk from Punjab, Pakistan

Department of Food Science & Human Nutrition, University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Lahore 54000, Pakistan
Department of Epidemiology & Public Health, University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Lahore 54000, Pakistan
Department of Dairy Technology, University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Lahore 54000, Pakistan
University Institute of Diet and Nutritional Sciences, Faculty of Allied Health Sciences, The University of Lahore, Lahore 54000, Pakistan
School of Exercise and Nutrition, Faculty of Health, Deakin University, Canberra 2600, Australia
Department of Clinical Laboratory Sciences, College of Applied Medical Sciences, Jouf University, Sakaka 75471, Saudi Arabia
Student Research Committee, School of Medicine, Bam University of Medical Sciences, Bam 44340847, Iran
Zabol Medicinal Plants Research Center, Zabol University of Medical Sciences, Zabol 61615–585, Iran
Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Concepción, Concepcion 4030000, Chile
Department of Clinical Oncology, Queen Elizabeth Hospital, 30 Gascoigne Road, Kowloon, Hong Kong 999077, China
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Toxins 2019, 11(10), 574;
Received: 1 August 2019 / Revised: 16 September 2019 / Accepted: 28 September 2019 / Published: 2 October 2019
The manifestation of aflatoxins in feed and food is a major issue in the world as its presence leads to some health problems. This study investigates the incidence of aflatoxin M1 (AFM1) contamination in raw milk samples which were collected from Punjab, Pakistan. The Cluster Random Sampling technique was used to collect 960 milk samples from five different regions, and samples were collected every month. The AFM1 level in raw milk was analyzed by the ELISA technique. The findings demonstrate that 70% of samples exceeded the United States permissible maximum residue limits (MRL 0.50 µg/L), with an overall AFM1 level that ranged from 0.3 to 1.0 µg/L. AFM1 contamination varied with the season: The highest average contamination was detected in winter (0.875 µg/L), followed by autumn (0.751 µg/L), spring (0.654 µg/L), and summer (0.455 µg/L). The Eastern region exhibited the highest average AFM1 contamination (0.705 µg/L). Milk samples from the Northern region were found to be widely contaminated, as 86.9% samples exceeded the US MRL, followed by the Eastern region, with 72.3% samples being contaminated with >0.5 µg/L AFM1. The study indicated that the raw milk supply chain was heavily contaminated. Recommendations and remedial measures need to be developed by regulatory authorities to improve the raw milk quality. View Full-Text
Keywords: Aflatoxins; AFM1; ELISA; raw milk; Pakistan Aflatoxins; AFM1; ELISA; raw milk; Pakistan
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Akbar, N.; Nasir, M.; Naeem, N.; Ahmad, M.-U.-D.; Iqbal, S.; Rashid, A.; Imran, M.; Aslam Gondal, T.; Atif, M.; Salehi, B.; Sharifi-Rad, J.; Martorell, M.; Cho, W.C. Occurrence and Seasonal Variations of Aflatoxin M1 in Milk from Punjab, Pakistan. Toxins 2019, 11, 574.

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