toxins

The Research Publications track research that is published across national and international peer-reviewed journals. The most recent articles are available ahead of print and searchable by Journal Title, Subject, USDA Grant Funding Agencies or FDA Grant Funding Agencies. The research publications are tracked across five subject areas: Bacterial Pathogens, Chemical Contaminants, Natural Toxins, Parasites, and Viruses.

Sun, 05/31/2020 - 03:21
In 2016, the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) published practice guidelines for botulinum toxin (BoNT) in the treatment of blepharospasm, cervical dystonia, adult spasticity, and headache. This article, focusing on dystonia, provides context for these guidelines through literature review. Studies that led to Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval of each toxin for dystonia indications are...
Sun, 05/31/2020 - 03:21
Different batches of biomass/feed quality maize contaminated by aflatoxins were processed at the industrial scale (a continuous process and separate discontinuous steps) to evaluate the effect of different cleaning solutions on toxin reduction. The investigated cleaning solutions included: (i) mechanical size separation of coarse, small and broken kernels, (ii) removal of dust/fine particles...
Sun, 05/31/2020 - 03:21
Staphylococcus aureus is one of the most common pathogens that infects the airways of patients with cystic fibrosis (CF) and contributes to respiratory failure. Recently, livestock-associated methicillin-resistant S. aureus (LA-MRSA), usually cultured in farm animals, were detected in CF airways. Although some of these strains are able to establish severe infections in humans, there is limited...
Fri, 05/29/2020 - 03:21
Mycotoxins are toxic fungal secondary metabolites that contaminate food and feed. Mycotoxin contamination occurs as soon as environmental conditions are favorable for fungal growth and mycotoxin production, in the fields, during storage of raw materials and during industrial processes [...]
Fri, 05/29/2020 - 03:21
Shiga toxins (Stxs), syn. Vero(cyto)toxins, are potent bacterial exotoxins and the principal virulence factor of enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC), a subset of Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC). EHEC strains, e.g., strains of serovars O157:H7 and O104:H4, may cause individual cases as well as large outbreaks of life-threatening diseases in humans. Stxs primarily exert a ribotoxic...
Thu, 05/28/2020 - 03:23
The aim of the present study was to determine the effect of zearalenone (ZEN), administered per os to gilts at doses equivalent to 50%, 100%, and 150% of no-observed-adverse-effect level (NOAEL) values for 14, 28, and 42 days during weaning, on changes in the parameters of the oxidoreductive balance, cytokine secretion, and basal metabolism in ileal Payer’s patches. Immunoenzymatic...
Wed, 05/27/2020 - 03:20
Cylindrospermopsin (CYN) and microcystins (MC) are cyanotoxins that can occur simultaneously in contaminated water and food. CYN/MC-LR mixtures previously investigated in vitro showed an induction of micronucleus (MN) formation only in the presence of the metabolic fraction S9. When this is the case, the European Food Safety Authority recommends a follow up to in vivo testing. Thus, rats were...
Fri, 05/22/2020 - 03:21
The identity of the fungi responsible for fruitlet core rot (FCR) disease in pineapple has been the subject of investigation for some time. This study describes the diversity and toxigenic potential of fungal species causing FCR in La Reunion, an island in the Indian Ocean. One-hundred-and-fifty fungal isolates were obtained from infected and healthy fruitlets on Reunion Island and exclusively...
Fri, 05/22/2020 - 03:21
Total phenolic content (TPC) and several phenolic acids present in rice grains were compared with fungal infection and mycotoxin presence throughout the growing season. Samples of 4 rice varieties were collected in 2018 and 2019 at 3 different plant phenological stages. Total fungal and main mycotoxigenic fungi incidence were checked and mycotoxin content was analysed. On the same samples, TPC...
Thu, 05/21/2020 - 03:22
Food and crop contaminations with mycotoxins are a severe health risk for consumers and cause high economic losses worldwide. Currently, different chromatographic- and immuno-based methods are used to detect mycotoxins within different sample matrices. There is a need for novel, highly sensitive detection technologies that avoid time-consuming procedures and expensive laboratory equipment but...
Sat, 05/16/2020 - 03:20
Clostridium tetani produces a potent neurotoxin, the tetanus toxin (TeNT), which is responsible for an often-fatal neurological disease (tetanus) characterized by spastic paralysis. Prevention is efficiently acquired by vaccination with the TeNT toxoid, which is obtained by C. tetani fermentation and subsequent purification and chemical inactivation. C. tetani synthesizes TeNT in a regulated...
Thu, 05/14/2020 - 03:21
Ciguatera poisoning is a foodborne illness caused by the consumption of seafood contaminated with ciguatoxins (CTXs) produced by dinoflagellates from the genera Gambierdiscus and Fukuyoa. The suitability of Solid Phase Adsorption Toxin Tracking (SPATT) technology for the monitoring of dissolved CTXs in the marine environment has recently been demonstrated. To refine the use of this passive...
Wed, 05/13/2020 - 03:21
Weaned piglets (n = 3 × 6) were fed 0, 15 and 30 mg/kg diet fumonisin (FB1, FB2 and FB3, i.e., FBs, a sphinganine analogue mycotoxin), from the age of 35 days for 21 days, to assess mycotoxin induced, dose-dependent changes in the red cells’ membrane. Ouabain sensitive Na+/K+ ATPase activity was determined from lysed red cell membranes, membrane fatty acid (FA) profile was...
Tue, 05/12/2020 - 03:20
Shiga toxins (Stxs) expressed by the enterohaemorrhagic Escherichia coli and enteric Shigella dysenteriae 1 pathogens are protein synthesis inhibitors. Stxs have been shown to induce apoptosis via the activation of extrinsic and intrinsic pathways in many cell types (epithelial, endothelial, and B cells) but the link between the protein synthesis inhibition and caspase activation is still unclear...
Mon, 05/11/2020 - 03:22
Objective: The effects of botulinum toxin injections (BoNT) on health-related quality of life along the complex spectrum of spasticity needs further characterization to guide practitioners in a real-life therapeutic environment. Methods: In this study, we analyzed 50 consecutive and unselected patients with spasticity before and four weeks after re-injection of botulinum toxin. Health-related...
Mon, 05/11/2020 - 03:22
The tremorgenic mycotoxin penitrem A is produced by Penicillium species as a secondary metabolite on moldy food and feed. Dogs are sometimes exposed to penitrem A by consumption of spoiled food waste or fallen fruit. The lipophilic toxin crosses the blood-brain barrier and targets neuroreceptors and neurotransmitter release mechanisms in the central and peripheral nervous systems. Typical...
Mon, 05/11/2020 - 03:22
Spasticity is a common disabling disorder in adult subjects suffering from stroke, brain injury, multiple sclerosis (MS) and spinal cord injury (SCI). Spasticity may be a disabling symptom in people during rehabilitation and botulinum toxin type A (BTX-A) has become the first-line therapy for the local form. High BTX-A doses are often used in clinical practice. Advantages and limitations are...
Mon, 05/11/2020 - 03:22
Chronic osteoarthritis pain is an increasing worldwide problem. Treatment for osteoarthritis pain is generally inadequate or fraught with potential toxicities. Botulinum toxins (BoNTs) are potent inhibitors of neuropeptide release. Paralytic toxicity is due to inhibition at the neuromuscular junction, and this effect has been utilized for treatments of painful dystonias. Pain relief following...
Sun, 05/10/2020 - 03:20
Tetrodotoxin (TTX) is a potent natural toxin causative of human food intoxications that shares its mechanism of action with the paralytic shellfish toxin saxitoxin (STX). Both toxins act as potent blockers of voltage-gated sodium channels. Although human intoxications by TTX were initially described in Japan, nowadays increasing concern about the regulation of this toxin in Europe has emerged due...
Sun, 05/10/2020 - 03:20
The efficacy of yeast-based mycotoxin detoxifiers on health and growth performance of newly-weaned pigs (27-d-old) fed diets naturally contaminated with deoxynivalenol was investigated. Sixty pigs were individually assigned to five treatments for 34 d: NC (negative control, 1.2 mg/kg of deoxynivalenol); PC (positive control, 3.2 mg/kg of deoxynivalenol); CYC (PC + clay/yeast culture-based product...
Sun, 05/10/2020 - 03:20
Ciguatoxins (CTXs) are a group of neurotoxins responsible for the syndrome ciguatera fish poisoning (CFP) as a result of the consumption of contaminated fish. The presence of these toxins has been detected around the Pacific, Caribbean and Indian coasts. Recent reports indicate the emergence of CFP in other geographic areas, in particular in European coasts, of the Canary Islands (Spain) and...
Sat, 05/09/2020 - 03:20
The neurotoxin formed by Clostridium botulinum Group II is a major cause of foodborne botulism, a deadly intoxication. This study aims to understand the genetic diversity and spread of C. botulinum Group II strains and their neurotoxin genes. A comparative genomic study has been conducted with 208 highly diverse C. botulinum Group II strains (180 newly sequenced strains isolated from 16 countries...
Sat, 05/09/2020 - 03:20
Penicillium spp. are emerging as producers of mycotoxins and other toxic metabolites in nuts. A HPLC-MS/MS method was developed to detect 19 metabolites produced by Penicillium spp. on chestnuts, hazelnuts, walnuts and almonds. Two extraction methods were developed, one for chestnuts and one for the other three nuts. The recovery, LOD, LOQ and matrix effect were determined for each analyte and...
Fri, 05/08/2020 - 03:21
Botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) is the most potent natural toxin known. Of the seven BoNT serotypes (A to G), types A, B, E, and F cause human botulism. Treatment of human botulism requires the development of effective toxin-neutralizing antibodies without side effects such as serum sickness and anaphylaxis. In this study, we generated fully human monoclonal antibodies (HuMAbs) against serotype B...
Fri, 05/08/2020 - 03:21
Ochratoxin A (OTA) is the most toxic member of ochratoxins, a group of toxic secondary metabolites produced by fungi. The most relevant species involved in OTA production in grapes is Aspergillus carbonarius. Berry infection by A. carbonarius is enhanced by damage to the skin caused by abiotic and biotic factors. Insect pests play a major role in European vineyards, and Lepidopteran species such...
Fri, 05/08/2020 - 03:21
Over the last decade, knowledge has significantly increased on the taxonomic identity and distribution of dinoflagellates of the genera Gambierdiscus and Fukuyoa. Additionally, a number of hitherto unknown bioactive metabolites have been described, while the role of these compounds in ciguatera poisoning (CP) remains to be clarified. Ciguatoxins and maitotoxins are very toxic compounds produced...
Thu, 05/07/2020 - 03:20
Aflatoxin B1 (AFB1), which has potent toxicity and carcinogenicity, is a common contaminant of important agricultural commodities. This study aimed to investigate the frequency of corn flour intake and assess the exposure to AFB1 via direct detection of AFB1 in the diet and serum AFB1 exposure biomarker, so as to evaluate their associations with the risk of esophageal precancerous lesions (EPL)....
Wed, 05/06/2020 - 03:22
During infection, the foodborne bacterial pathogen Listeria monocytogenes dynamically influences the gene expression profile of host cells. Infection-induced transcriptional changes are a typical feature of the host-response to bacteria and contribute to the activation of protective genes such as inflammatory cytokines. However, by using specialized virulence factors, bacterial pathogens can...
Wed, 05/06/2020 - 03:21
Although it rarely induces disease in humans, Listeria monocytogenes (Lm) is important due to the frequency of serious pathological conditions—such as sepsis and meningitis—it causes in those few people that do get infected. Virulence factors (VF) of Lm—especially those involved in the passage through multiple cellular barriers of the body, including internalin (Inl...
Wed, 05/06/2020 - 03:21
Ochratoxin A (OTA) is a secondary metabolite produced by fungal pathogens such as Penicillium verrucosum, which develops in food commodities during storage such as cereals, grapes, and coffee. It represents public health concerns due to its genotoxicity, carcinogenicity, and teratogenicity. The objective of this study was to evaluate the ability of actinobacteria and their metabolites to degrade...
Mon, 05/04/2020 - 03:19
Aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) leads to a major risk to poultry and its residues in meat products can also pose serious threat to human health. In this study, after feeding 165-day-old Roman laying hens for 35 days, the toxic effects of aflatoxin B1 at different concentrations were evaluated. The purpose of this study was to explore the mechanism of liver toxicosis responses to AFB1. We found that highly...
Mon, 05/04/2020 - 03:19
This study describes the nerve entry point and intramuscular nerve branching of the rhomboid major and minor, providing essential information for improved performance of botulinum toxin injections and electromyography. A modified Sihler method was performed on the rhomboid major and minor muscles (10 specimens each). The nerve entry point and intramuscular arborization areas were identified in...
Fri, 05/01/2020 - 03:20
Epsilon-toxin produced by Clostridium perfringens significantly contributes to the pathogeneses of enterotoxemia in ruminants and multiple sclerosis in humans. Epsilon-toxin forms a heptameric oligomer in the host cell membrane, promoting cell disruption. Here, we investigate the effect of epsilon-toxin on epithelial barrier functions. Epsilon-toxin impairs the barrier integrity of Madin-Darby...
Wed, 04/29/2020 - 03:20
Employing theoretical calculations with density functional theory (DFT) using the B3LYP/6-311++G(d,p) functional and basis set, the interaction of the aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) molecule and the functional groups present in the Pyracantha koidzumii biosorbent was investigated. Dissociation free energy and acidity equilibrium constant values were obtained theoretically both in solution (water) and gas...
Tue, 04/28/2020 - 03:20
The neuroblastoma cell-based assay (CBA-N2a) is widely used for the detection of marine biotoxins in seafood products, yet a consensus protocol is still lacking. In this study, six key parameters of CBA-N2a were revisited: cell seeding densities, cell layer viability after 26 h growth, MTT incubation time, Ouabain and Veratridine treatment and solvent and matrix effects. A step-by-step protocol...
Sun, 04/26/2020 - 03:19
(1) In dystonia, the somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold (STDT) is abnormally increased at rest and higher and longer-lasting during movement execution in comparison with healthy subjects (HS), suggesting an abnormal sensorimotor integration. These abnormalities are thought to depend on abnormal proprioceptive input coming from dystonic muscles. Since Botulinum toxin-A (BT-A) reduces...
Sun, 04/26/2020 - 03:19
Botulinum neurotoxins (BoNTs) are potent neurotoxins produced by bacteria, which inhibit neurotransmitter release, specifically in their physiological target known as motor neurons (MNs). For the potency assessment of BoNTs produced for treatment in traditional and aesthetic medicine, the mouse lethality assay is still used by the majority of manufacturers, which is ethically questionable in...
Sun, 04/26/2020 - 03:19
To investigate pufferfish accumulation, elimination, and distribution of tetrodotoxin (TTX), Takifugu obscurus was fed with wild TTX-containing gastropod Nassarius semiplicata to simulate the natural food chain. Three-month-old non-poisonous T. obscurus was fed with wild toxic N. semiplicata at three exposure dose for 28 days, and later, with toxin-free food until day 67. Three fish individuals...
Fri, 04/24/2020 - 03:19
Fungal secondary metabolites play important roles not only in fungal ecology but also in humans living as beneficial medicine or harmful toxins. In filamentous fungi, bZIP-type transcription factors (TFs) are associated with the proteins involved in oxidative stress response and secondary metabolism. In this study, a connection between a bZIP TF and oxidative stress induction of secondary...
Fri, 04/24/2020 - 03:19
Mycotoxins are secondary metabolites produced by fungi of different species (mainly Aspergillus, Fusarium, and Penicillium) with toxic effects for humans and animals that can contaminate food and feed [...]
Fri, 04/24/2020 - 03:19
Anti-idiotypic nanobodies, usually expressed by gene engineering protocol, has been shown as a nontoxic coating antigen for toxic compound immunoassays. We here focused on how to increase immunoassay sensitivity by changing the nanobody’s primary sequence. In the experiments, two anti-idiotype nanobodies against monoclonal antibody 1H2, which is specific to ochratoxin A, were obtained...
Fri, 04/24/2020 - 03:19
Black point is a fungal disease of wheat, mainly associated with mycotoxigenic Alternaria species. Affected wheat kernels are characterized by dark brown discolouration of the embryo region and reduction of grain quality. Potential risk is the possible accumulation of Alternaria mycotoxins, alternariol (AOH), alternariol-monomethyl ether (AME), tenuazonic acid (TA), and altenuene (ALT), provided...
Thu, 04/23/2020 - 03:18
Blepharospasm and oromandibular dystonia are focal dystonias characterized by involuntary and often patterned, repetitive muscle contractions. There is a long history of medical and surgical therapies, with the current first-line therapy, botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT), becoming standard of care in 1989. This comprehensive review utilized MEDLINE and PubMed and provides an overview of the history of...
Thu, 04/23/2020 - 03:18
Aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) is a secondary metabolite produced by some Aspergillus spp. fungi affecting many crops and feed materials. Aflatoxin M1 (AFM1), the 4-hydroxylated metabolite of AFB1, is the main AFB1-related compound present in milk, and it is categorized by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) as a “group 1 human carcinogen”. The aim of this work was to...
Wed, 04/22/2020 - 03:18
Ciguatera poisoning (CP) is a common seafood intoxication mainly caused by the consumption of fish contaminated by ciguatoxins. Recent studies showed that Caribbean ciguatoxin-1 (C-CTX1) is the main toxin causing CP through fish caught in the Northeast Atlantic, e.g., Canary Islands (Spain) and Madeira (Portugal). The use of liquid chromatography coupled to tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS)...
Tue, 04/21/2020 - 03:20
The diffusion of the legalization of cannabis for recreational, medicinal and nutraceutical uses requires the development of adequate analytical methods to assure the safety and security of such products. In particular, aflatoxins are considered to pose a major risk for the health of cannabis consumers. Among analytical methods that allows for adequate monitoring of food safety, immunoassays play...
Fri, 04/17/2020 - 03:14
Ochratoxin A (OTA), a mycotoxin that is of utmost concern in food and feed safety, is produced by fungal species that mainly belong to the Aspergillus and Penicillium genera. The development of mitigation strategies to reduce OTA content along the supply chains is key to ensuring safer production of food and feed. Enzyme-based strategies are among the most promising methods due to their...
Tue, 04/14/2020 - 03:15
A reliable, sensitive and accurate multiple mycotoxin method was developed for the simultaneous determination of 17 mycotoxins in swine, poultry and dairy feeds using stable isotope dilution (13C-ISTD) and (ultra)-high performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (HPLC-MS/MS). A simple QuEChERS-based method (quick, easy, cheap, effective, rugged and safe) was developed consisting of...
Mon, 04/13/2020 - 03:14
Ochratoxin A (OTA) is produced by fungi present in several agricultural products with much relevance to food safety. Since this mycotoxin is widely found in cereals, beer has a potential contamination risk. Therefore, it was deemed essential to quantify, for the first time, the levels of OTA in beer, a cereal-based product that is marketed in Portugal, as well as to calculate the human estimated...
Mon, 04/13/2020 - 03:14
Botulinum toxin (BoNT) injection is regarded as a promising treatment for musculoskeletal pain. However, its efficacy for treating chronic shoulder pain remains unclear. We investigated the effectiveness of BoNT injections for chronic shoulder pain by conducting a systematic search of electronic databases up to March 2020 for randomized control trials (RCTs) that used BoNT injections for chronic...

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