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Numerical optimization of temperature-time degradation of multiple mycotoxins

Journal Contribution - Journal Article

Mycotoxins are potent food contaminants that exert significant deleterious effects on human and animal health, yet, there is limited and often conflicting data on their thermal stability. The present study systematically investigated the thermal degradation patterns of multiple mycotoxins as a function of temperature and time, in pure form and spiked into a food matrix (maize flour), using a numerical modelling approach. Mycotoxins under investigation included aflatoxins (AFs), fumonisins (FBs), zearalenone and its analogue alpha and beta epimers (ZEAs), ochratoxins (OTs), T-2 toxin (T-2), alternariol monomethyl ether (AME) and sterigmatocystin (STEG). A set of statistically-designed experiments were conducted, and a second-order optimization function fitted to the experimental data. The resultant models were well fit with R-2 values ranging from 0.87 to 0.99 and 0.89 to 0.99, for pure mycotoxin standards and spiked maize flour, respectively. It was also possible to statistically determine the optimum degradation conditions which were 216.57 degrees C/63.28 min and 210.85 degrees C/54.71 min for pure mycotoxins and spiked into maize flour, respectively. Our observations herein could be critical for food safety applications targeted at reducing or at best eliminating completely multi-mycotoxins in food using heat processing while limiting the destruction of food quality factors.
ISSN: 0278-6915
Volume: 125
Pages: 289 - 304
Publication year:2019