Uptake of deoxynivalenol by earthworms from Fusarium-infected wheat straw
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Conservation tillage combined with crop-residue mulching is increasingly important to meet soil protection targets. Concurrently, the health risk of soil-borne pathogenic fungi like Fusarium species, which produce deoxynivalenol (DON) as their major mycotoxin, is increasing. The detritivorous earthworm species Lumbricus terrestris takes part in the efficient degradation of Fusarium-infected and DON-contaminated wheat straw. Against this background, a laboratory study was conducted to quantify by means of ELISA technique the uptake of DON and its possible absorption and accumulation in tissue by L. terrestris in the short-term (5 weeks) and long-term (11 weeks). The DON concentrations in L. terrestris of the Fusarium-infected treatment were significantly different in the order of gut tissue > body wall > gut content at both dates with a decline in the long-term. The DON concentrations in the tissues decreased by an order of magnitude of weeks to months.
KeywordsDON Earthworm tissue Earthworm gut Wheat straw Mycotoxin Arable soil
We thank Dr. Joachim Brunotte for helpful advice with the experimental conception of this study and for providing the soil applied in the microcosms. The excellent technical assistance of Sabine El Sayed, Stefanie Schlißke, Bettina Schnauß, Sabine Peickert and Petra Romanczuk-Schulz is gratefully acknowledged.
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