, Volume 120, Issue 3, pp 177–182 | Cite as

Tremorgenic mycotoxins produced by strains of Penicillium spp. isolated from toxic Poa huecu parodi

  • M. Scuteri
  • M. A. Sala de Miguel
  • J. Blanco Viera
  • E. Planes de Banchero
Mycotoxicoses and Mycotoxins


Seventeen strains of Penicillium spp. have been isolated from Poa huecu Parodi from the Zapala zone, exhibiting toxicity to sheet. The following strains have been identified: P. crustosum, cyclopium, notatum, palitans, puberulum, verrucosum, viridicatum and Penicillium spp. The toxigenic capacity of the strains was studied after growing them under suitable conditions. Toxins produced were analysed by thin layer chromatography (TLC). Penitrem A (PA) and Penitrem B (PB) neurotoxins were identified and quantitated in twelve strains; verruculogen (VERR) and fumitremorgen B (FTB) being present in one of them. The effect of these mycotoxins was studied in mice. Neurological symptoms characteristic of the intoxication by tremorgenic toxins and similar to those observed in sheep suffering from ‘huecu's disease’ were observed. The possible role of these toxins as causative agents of ‘huecu's disease’ is discussed.

Key words

Penicillium spp. growth ‘in vitro’ tremorgenic mycotoxins Poa huecu Parodi 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Parodi L. The toxic gramineous for the cattle in the República Argentina. Revista Argentina de Agronomía 1950; 17: 163–227.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Acosta JL. Report on the ‘huaicu’. Boletin Ministerio Agricultura, Buenos Aires 1913; 16(5–6): 649–59.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Bonazzi FF, Ortiz RE. Experimental intoxication by Poa huecu in sheep. Technical report No 10 INTA, San Carlos de Bariloche 1979.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Gallo GG. Toxic plants for the cattle in the south cone of America. Buenos Aires Editorial Universitaria de Buenos Aires, Colección Manuales 1979.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Acosta JL. The ‘huecú’ or ‘huaicú’: nervous disease proper of herbivors of the Patagonia. Revista Facultad Agronomia y Veterinaria, Buenos Aires, Thesis No 86, 1914.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Carrillo BJ, Corbellini CN, Blanco Viera FJ. Tremorgenic effect and study pathological of the experimental intoxication by Poa huecu in sheep. Revista de Medicina Veterinaria, Buenos Aires 1983; 64: 152–64.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Corbellini CN, Ruksan BE, Miquet J, Blanco Viera FJ, Etchegoyen M, Sala de Miguel M, Carrillo BJ. Experimental reproduction of ‘mal de huecu’ in sheep. Revista de Investigaciones Agropecuarias INTA 1981; 16: 159–70.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Cole RJ. Tremorgenic mycotoxins. In: Rodricks JV, Hesseltine CW, Mehlman CW, eds. Mycotoxin in human and animal health. Illinois: Pathotox Publishers Inc. 1977: 583–95.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Wilson BJ, Wilson CH. Toxin from Aspergillus flavus: production on food materials of a substance tremors in mice. Science 1964; 144: 177–78.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Wilson BJ, Wilson CH, Hayes AW. Tremorgenic toxin from Penicillium cyclopium grown on food materials. Nature 1968; 220: 77–78.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Cole RJ, Kirksey JW, Moore JM, Blankenship BR, Diene UL, Davis ND. Tremorgenic toxin from Penicillium verruculosum. Applied Microbiology 1972; 24: 248–56.Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Cole RJ, Kirksey JW. A new tremorgenic metabolite from Penicillium paxilli. Canadian Journal of Microbiology; 1974; 20: 1159–62.Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Cole RJ, Dorner JW, Landsen JA, Cox RH, Pape C, Cunfer B, Nicholson SS, Bedell DM. Paspalum staggers: isolation and identification of tremorgenic metabolites from sclerotia of Claviceps paspali. Agricultural and Food Chemistry 1977; 25: 1197–1201.Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Dorner JW, Cole RJ, Cox RH, Cunfer BM. Paspalitrem C, a new metabolite from sclerotia of Claviceps paspali. Journal Agricultural and Food Chemistry 1984; 32: 1069–1071.Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Gallagher RT, Finer J, Clardy J, Leutwiler A, Weibel F, Acklin W, Arigoni D. Paspalinine, a tremorgenic metabolite from Claviceps paspali. Tetrahedron Letter 1980; 21: 235–38.Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Gallagher RT, White EP, Mortimer PH. Ryegrass staggers: isolation of potent neurotoxin lolitrem A and lolitrem B from staggers-producing pastures. New Zealand Veterinary Journal 1981; 29: 189–90.Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Gallagher RT, Latch GCM, Keogh RG. The janthitrems: fluorescent tremorgenic toxins produced by Penicillium janthinellum isolates from ryegrass pastures. Applied Environmental Microbiology 1980; 39: 272–73.Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Arp LH, Richard JL. Intoxication of dogs with the mycotoxin penitrem A. Journal American Veterinary Medicine Association 1979; 175: 565–66.Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Cole RJ, Kirksey JW, Dorner JW, Wilson DM, Johson Jr. JC, Johson AN, Bedell DM, Springer JP, Chexal K, Clardy JC, Cox RH. Mycotoxins produced by Aspergillus fumigatus species isolated from molded silage. Agricultural and Food Chemistry 1977; 25: 826–30.Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Dorner JW, Cole RJ, Hill RA. Tremorgenic mycotoxins produced by Aspergillus fumigatus and Penicillium crustosum isolated from molded corn implicated in a natural intoxication of cattle. Journal Agricultural and Food Chemistry 1984; 32: 411–13.Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Kellerman TS, Newsholme SJ, Coetzer JAW, Van der Westhuizen GCA. A tremorgenic mycotoxicosis of cattle caused by maize sprouted infested with Aspergillus clavatus. Onderstepoort Journal Veterinary Research 1984; 51: 271–74.Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Shreeve RJ, Patterson DSP, Roberta BA, Mac Donald SW, Wood EN. Isolation of potentially tremorgenic fungi from pasture associated with a condition resembling ryegrass staggers. Revista de Medidina Veterinaria Buenos Aires 1978; 59: 305–06.Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Barnett HL. Illustrated genera of imperfect fungi. Minneapolis, USA: Burgess Publishing Co, 1955.Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Cysewski SJ, Bartz AL, Pior AC. Penitrem A intoxication of calves: blood chemical and pathologic changes. American Journal Veterinary Research 1975; 36: 53–58.Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Di Menna ME, Mantle PG. The role of Penicillia in ryegrass staggers. Research Veterinary Science 1978; 24: 347–51.Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    Valdes JJ, Cameron JE, Cole RJ. Aflatrem: a tremorgenic mycotoxin with acute neurotoxic effect. Environmental Health Perspectives 1985; 62: 459–63.Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    Mantle PG, Mortimer PH, White EP. Mycotoxic tremorgens of Claviceps paspali and Penicillium cyclopium: a comparative study of effects on sheep and cattle in relation to natural staggers syndromes. Research Veterinary Science 1977; 24: 49–56.Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    Ciegler A. Tremorgenic toxin from Penicillium palitans. Applied Microbiology 1969; 18: 128–29.Google Scholar
  29. 29.
    Raper KB, Fennel DI, Thom Ch. A manual of the Penicillia. Baltimore: The Williams and Wilkins Company. Waverly Press, Inc., 1949.Google Scholar
  30. 30.
    Ramirez C. Manual and atlas of the Penicillia. Amsterdam: Elsevier Biomedical Press, 1982.Google Scholar
  31. 31.
    Ciegler A, Pitt JI. Survey of the genus Penicillium for tremorgenic toxin production. Mycopathologia Mycology Applied 1970; 42: 1924.Google Scholar
  32. 32.
    Gallagher, RT, Latch GCM. Production of the tremorgenic toxins verruculogen and fumitremorgen B by Penicillium piscarium Westling. Applied Environmental Microbiology 1977; 33: 730–31.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Scuteri
    • 1
  • M. A. Sala de Miguel
    • 1
  • J. Blanco Viera
    • 2
  • E. Planes de Banchero
    • 1
  1. 1.Mycotoxins Laboratory, Institut of Microbiology, Centro de Investigaciones en Ciencias AgronómicasInstituto National de Tecnología AgropecuariaCastelar, Prov. de Buenos AiresArgentina
  2. 2.Institute of Animal Pethology, Centro de Investigaciones en Ciencias VeterinariasInstituto National de Tecnología AgropecuariaArgentina

Personalised recommendations