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Toxicologic screening of fungi isolated from millet (<i>pennisetum spp</i>) during the rainy and dry harmattan seasons in Niger state, Nigeria


HA Makun
TA Gbodi
AS Tijani
A Abai
GU Kadiri

Abstract

A survey of fungi contaminating mouldy field, stored and marketed millet samples collected during rainy and dry harmattan seasons of the year 2000 from the twenty five local government areas of Niger
State, Nigeria, was conducted. Some of the fungal isolates from the two groups of samples were screened for their mycotoxin producing potentials in mice. Aflatoxin B1 content of the rainy season millet samples was determined. Aspergillus niger was the predominant fungi found in millet during the rains. Twelve out of the 49 wet season millet samples were contaminated with AFB1 at concentrations between 1370.28 and 3495.10 ug/kg. Penicillium spp. was the commonest contaminant of millet during the dry harmattan season. Thirty five of the fifty five fungal isolates screened for toxicity were found to produce toxic metabolites that were lethal to mice and were isolates of Aspergillus, Fusarium, Penicillium, Rhizopus, Mucor, Syncephalastrum, and Helminthosporium.