Greener Journal of Microbiology and Antimicrobials

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Enyiukwu et al

Greener Journal of Microbiology and Antimicrobials Vol. 2 (3), pp. 032-048, July 2014.

 ISSN: 2354-2284 

Review Paper

Manuscript Number: 0521014241



Mycotoxins in Stored Agricultural Products: Implications to Food Safety and Health and Prospects of Plant-derived Pesticides as Novel Approach to their Management


1*Enyiukwu D.N., 1Awurum A.N., 2Nwaneri J.A.


1Department of Plant Health Management, Michael Okpara University of Agriculture Umudike, PMB 7269 Umuahia abia state Nigeria. Tel. +234 (0)803 744 689.

2Minor Roots Crops Programme, National Roots Crops Research Institute Umudike, PMB 7009 Umuahia, Abia State.


*Corresponding Author’s Email: enyidave2003 @gmail .com


Mycotoxins are toxic secondary metabolites from some species of Aspergillus, Fusarium Penicillium and their related fungi. Their contamination results generally in inferior quality of produce and produce end-products, food safety and ultimately barriers trans-border marketability of agro-produce. Though the presence of mycotoxigenic fungus on produce does not always translate to presence of mycotoxins; however, mycotoxins are silent killers and their effects could be submerged over a long period of time especially during intermittent exposures. These fungal toxins when ingested or inhaled participate in several metabolic dysfunctions in human and livestock systems such as immunological imbalance, cancers, allergies, abortions and in some cases death of the affected hosts. Conditions of high temperatures and relative humidity coupled with poor store standards and hygiene which characterized tropical subsistence farmsteads encourage mouldiness and mycotoxin contamination of agricultural products. The mycotoxins of most agricultural importance (aflatoxins, fumonisins, ochratoxins, trichothecenes) were enumerated in this review while their management strategies were also highlighted; with emphasis on plant-derived anti-mycotoxigenic interventions useable in low-input agricultural production systems of sub-Saharan Africa.

Keywords: Mycotoxins, plant-derived fungicides, Aspergillus spp., Fusarium spp., Penicillium spp., trichothecenes.


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