Submitted to: Journal of Toxicology Toxins Reviews
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: July 23, 2008
Publication Date: August 1, 2008
Citation: Palumbo, J.D., O Keeffe, T.L., Abbas, H.K. 2008. Microbial interactions with mycotoxigenic fungi and mycotoxins. Journal of Toxicology Toxins Reviews.27(3):261-285. Interpretive Summary: Several toxins produced by fungi are important contaminants of food crops. One means to reduce the contamination of crop plants is by using antagonistic microorganisms to biologically control the fungi. These microorganisms either inhibit the growth of toxin-producing fungi, which leads to reduced toxin contamination, or directly inhibit toxin production by the fungi. Several laboratories have studied antagonistic microorganisms from different crops, and have determined their effects on target fungi, mostly in laboratory and greenhouse tests. The studies reviewed in this article provide information about the interactions between toxin-producing fungi and other microorganisms in crop environments, which may offer insights into ways these interactions may be adapted for effective biological control.
Technical Abstract: Mycotoxins such as aflatoxins, fumonisins, trichothecenes, and ochratoxins are contaminants of many agronomic crops worldwide, and cause both economic losses and health effects. The potential of antagonistic microorganisms to be developed into biological control agents has been investigated in several crop systems, as alternatives to chemical fungicides for control of mycotoxigenic fungi. Laboratory and greenhouse studies have identified a number of bacterial, yeast, and filamentous fungal isolates that reduce crop contamination of mycotoxigenic fungi, although investigations of field efficacy have been limited. These studies demonstrate that the diversity of ecological interactions between mycotoxigenic fungi and other resident microorganisms may provide tools for development of biocontrol methods to reduce mycotoxin contamination.