In this study, deoxynivalenol (DON) in aqueous solution was exposed to gaseous ozone for periods ranging from 0 to 20 min. The degradation efficiency and cytotoxicity of DON were investigated after being treated by ozone. The results showed that DON was rapidly degraded from 10.76 ± 0.09 mg/L to 0.22 ± 0.04 mg/L within 15 min (P
< 0.05), representing a reduction of 97.95%, and no DON was detected after being exposed to 14.50 mg/L of ozone at a flow rate of 80 mL/min for 20 min. The degradation of DON depended on the ozone exposure time, and followed the first-order kinetic model (R2
= 0.9972). Human hepatic carcinoma (HepG2) and Henrietta Lacks (Hela) cells were used to evaluate the cytotoxicity of DON treated by ozone using the 3-(4,5-Dimethyl-2-thiazolyl)-2,5-diphenyl-2-H-tetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay. The half-maximal inhibitory concentrations (IC50
) values of DON on HepG2 and Hela cells were 2.10 and 1.33 mg/L after 48 h of exposure, respectively, and showed a dose-dependent manner. The cell vitalities of HepG2 and Hela cells on DON were both evidently improved after being exposed to ozone for 15 min, and there were no significant differences between the negative control and that treated at 20 min of ozone exposure. Gaseous ozone can potentially be used as a new method to detoxify DON in agricultural products.
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