Topics: Food, Public health, Toxicity, Fungus, Aflatoxin, World Health Organization / Pages: 6 (1299 words) / Published: Apr 15th, 2013
A fungus is a member of a large group of eukaryotic organisms (Bryden, 2007).Fungi is considered important microorganisms, because of its beneficial role in human life; it has been used for many purposes such as in medicinal manufacturing, industries, food production, and plant nutrient supplements. Also it has role in cycling of carbon in the atmosphere, since it is main decomposers of organic matter (kavanagh, 2011).
Fungi can be found naturally everywhere in the environment; in food, water, air, and in the soil. The environmental conditions are determining the growth of fungi. The ideal environmental conditions for growth of fungi are a moist and humid environment with warm temperature. Mycology is the biological study concerned with the study of fungi including genetics, taxonomy, toxicity, and historical usage by humans as a source of medicine, and food.
The fungi produce biologically active compounds, some of them may consider very toxic, and carcinogenic due to its ability to produce mycotoxin products. Mycotoxins are natural secondary metabolites released by fungi on agricultural produces in the field, and during storage (Aflatoxin:occurance and health risks, 2012). It considered as toxic because its ability for causing many illnesses and diseases, such as vomiting, abdominal pain, pulmonary edema, convulsions, coma, and death with cerebral edema and liver cancer, kidneys fails, and heart, it is affectivity of depends on the age, health statues of the individual, gender, duration of the exposure and the amount of mycotoxin that have been exposed (Bennett, 2003) .Also, the toxicity of the mycotoxin can be magnified by the interacting with other substances inside the body (Bennett, 2003). Mycotoxins vary in their toxicity, since they have different chemical structures and target different organs such as kidneys, liver, or the immune system .some are carcinogenic (Aflatoxin:occurance and health risks, 2012), such as aflatoxin, which is

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