Title: Fumonisin toxicity and mechanism of action: overview and current perspectives
Authors: Voss KA, Riley RT
Journal: Food Safety
Accepted date: 2013 Sep 17
Interpretive summary: Fumonisins are mycotoxins that are produced by Fusarium verticillioides and Fusarium proliferatum. They are found in corn (maize) and in corn-based foods. This review highlights selected toxicological and related investigations that have characterized the liver and kidney toxicity, liver and kidney cancer, and birth defects known as neural tube defects in laboratory animal models that are caused by the most common fumonisin, fumonisin B1. The studies have also established that fumonisin B1 causes these effects by disrupting sphingolipid metabolism and signaling pathways involved in cell death and survival. Further, results of applied toxicology investigations have shown that the alkaline cooking method used to make tortillas and extrusion reduce the amount of fumonisin and the potential toxicity of cooked foods. Taken together, toxicology investigations have also contributed to the development of a biomarker of exposure based on the concentration of fumonisin B1 that is excreted in urine. Together, the results of these investigations have contributed to risk assessments of fumonisins and to development of a biomarker for epidemiological investigations that are needed to determine the potential risk of fumonisins to consumers.
Related projects: Toxicology and Toxinology of Mycotoxins in Foods