Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Researchers Work To Combat Dangerous Aflatoxins

Date:
September 21, 2000
Source:
American Phytopathological Society
Summary:
There's a fungus among us as the saying goes, and it's one researchers are working hard to eradicate. Recently, plant health scientists, gathered in New Orleans for their Annual Meeting, presented and discussed the latest advancements in controlling the fungi that produce aflatoxins (toxic chemicals that are known to cause cancer in animals).

ST. PAUL, MN (September 11, 2000) -- There's a fungus among us as the saying goes, and it's one researchers are working hard to eradicate. Recently, plant health scientists, gathered in New Orleans for their Annual Meeting, presented and discussed the latest advancements in controlling the fungi that produce aflatoxins (toxic chemicals that are known to cause cancer in animals).

Related Articles


One of the most promising developments reported at the meeting was the identification of genetic resistance to the production of aflatoxins in more than five major crops. According to Donald White, plant pathologist, University of Illinois-Urbana and a presenter at the meeting, "Commercially usable resistant varieties are being developed and will be available to producers sometime in the future." But he is careful to add, "Genetic resistance greatly reduces the amount of aflatoxin, however, it does not completely eliminate it. Therefore, resistance will be most useful when combined with other techniques that lower fungal infection and aflatoxin production."

The other techniques he's referring to involve crop management practices that help discourage the growth of the fungus that causes aflatoxins to be produced in the first place. States Themis Michailides, a plant pathologist at the University of California-Davis "We've made progress on several fronts in our efforts to reduce contamination of crops with aflatoxins. Not only with biotechnology and genetic resistance, but also in our understanding of how simple crop management practices like irrigation to avoid drought stress, early harvesting and careful handling can significantly reduce aflatoxin content in crops."

When the fungus Aspergillus flavus (which is responsible for the majority of aflatoxin contamination) attacks crops, it often produces aflatoxins as a by-product. Because of their toxicity, aflatoxins are recognized as serious food safety hazards by most countries of the world and more than 50 countries have established or proposed regulations for controlling them in food and feed. In the U.S. corn, cottonseed, peanuts, and other crops are routinely tested and those containing more than 20 parts per million of aflatoxins cannot be used in human food or fed to dairy cows. It is estimated that crop loss due to aflatoxin contamination costs U.S. producers more than $100 million per year on average.

"The cost to producers is substantial," states Peter Cotty, plant pathologist, USDA-ARS. "And this cost is passed on to the consumers. By reducing aflatoxin contamination, we reduce the incidence of a potent carcinogen in food and in the environment."

###

Research advancements on aflatoxins were shared during the Annual Meeting of The American Phytopathological Society. The American Phytopathological Society (APS) is a non-profit, professional scientific organization dedicated to the study and control of plant disease with 5,000 members worldwide. Visit http://www.apsnet.org for more information.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Phytopathological Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Phytopathological Society. "Researchers Work To Combat Dangerous Aflatoxins." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 September 2000. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/09/000921073504.htm>.
American Phytopathological Society. (2000, September 21). Researchers Work To Combat Dangerous Aflatoxins. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/09/000921073504.htm
American Phytopathological Society. "Researchers Work To Combat Dangerous Aflatoxins." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/09/000921073504.htm (accessed December 22, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Monday, December 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Christmas Kissing Good for Health

Christmas Kissing Good for Health

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 22, 2014) Scientists in Amsterdam say couples transfer tens of millions of microbes when they kiss, encouraging healthy exposure to bacteria. Suzannah Butcher reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Brain-Dwelling Tapeworm Reveals Genetic Secrets

Brain-Dwelling Tapeworm Reveals Genetic Secrets

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 22, 2014) Cambridge scientists have unravelled the genetic code of a rare tapeworm that lived inside a patient's brain for at least four year. Researchers hope it will present new opportunities to diagnose and treat this invasive parasite. Matthew Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
New Fish Species Discovered, Setting Record for World's Deepest

New Fish Species Discovered, Setting Record for World's Deepest

Buzz60 (Dec. 22, 2014) A new species of fish is discovered living five miles beneath the ocean surface, making it the deepest living fish on earth. Jen Markham has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Earthworms Provide Cancer-Fighting Bacteria

Earthworms Provide Cancer-Fighting Bacteria

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 21, 2014) Polish scientists isolate bacteria from earthworm intestines which they say may be used in antibiotics and cancer treatments. Suzannah Butcher reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins