Health requirements related to food resources have become increasingly restrictive in recent years, ensuring the provision of products which are increasingly safe. As regards corn, along the entire supply chain (from the farmer to the final consumer) attention has been focused on the levels of mycotoxins detectable on the grain. These toxins are secondary metabolites produced by some fungal species under certain environmental conditions and are capable of causing serious damage to human and animal health.
Given the relevance and importance of the topic, a seminar has been organized during which the main fungal species (mycotoxin producers) that parasitize maize (Fusarium sp. and Aspergillus sp.), entry into the host and environmental conditions that cause these fungi to produce mycotoxins will be described. Subsequently, the main toxins of fungal origin that can be found in products deriving from corn (food and feed) will be presented and their impact on human and animal health will be evaluated. Available detection techniques to quantify the levels of different toxins present in the main products used for both human and animal feeding will be examined. Finally, the conference will end with the discussion of agronomic practices that can be used to prevent and/or reduce the production of these dangerous secondary metabolites.
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