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Aspergillus flavus and aflatoxins B1, B2, and M1 in corn associated with equine death


Corn from an Arkansas farm, where three horses died and others became sick, was investigated for causative principles. Necropsy of the three horses revealed what appeared to be severe hepatic necrosis. Histopathological examination indicated a pattern of hepatic lesions that was suggestive of aflatoxin contamination of the feed. Mycological examination of the corn by dilution plating revealed 95% of the colonies asAspergillus flavus. Chemical analysis of the corn for mycotoxins was positive for aflatoxin B1, B2, and M1 at concentrations of 114, 10, and 6 μg/Kg, respectively. Cyclopiazonic acid, sterigmatocystin, and theFusarium toxins, vomitoxin (deoxynivalenol), T-2 toxin, and diacetoxyscirpenol, were not detected. The presence of aflatoxin metabolites in the moldy corn and the presence of appropriate lesions were compatible with the diagnosis, equine aflatoxicosis.

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Vesonder, R., Haliburton, J., Stubblefield, R. et al. Aspergillus flavus and aflatoxins B1, B2, and M1 in corn associated with equine death. Arch. Environ. Contam. Toxicol. 20, 151–153 (1991).

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  • Corn
  • Aspergillus
  • Aflatoxin
  • Histopathological Examination
  • Hepatic Lesion