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Preliminary study on the relationship between aflatoxin-bovine serum albumin adducts in blood and aflatoxin M1 levels in milk of dairy cows


The aflatoxin (AF) albumin adduct is often used as a biomarker for aflatoxin exposure in humans. An ELISA method previously used for aflatoxin serum albumin in human blood was used to analyse bovine serum samples (n = 22) collected from dairy cattle during an aflatoxin mitigation study in Kenya. Albumin adduct data were compared with aflatoxin M1 (AFM1) levels in corresponding milk samples from these cows. The concentration ranged from < LOD to 487.9 pg/mL for AFM1 and < LOD and 96.3 pg/mg for aflatoxin-albumin. This study indicates that aflatoxin-albumin adducts could be used as a measure of chronic aflatoxin exposure in dairy cattle.

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The authors would like to acknowledge Irene Kagera for her help with the sampling. The authors would like to thank Christopher Wild (IARC, Lyon, France) for providing the aflatoxin-Cl2-BSA polyclonal antibody. It was the essential substance for our study.


The Kenyan sampling of milk and serum was supported by the Food Africa Programme which is mainly financed by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland contract no. 29891501 and the CGIAR Research Program on Agriculture for Nutrition and Health.

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Correspondence to Janine Saltzmann.

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Saltzmann, J., Xu, Y., Gong, Y.Y. et al. Preliminary study on the relationship between aflatoxin-bovine serum albumin adducts in blood and aflatoxin M1 levels in milk of dairy cows. Mycotoxin Res 36, 207–211 (2020).

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  • Aflatoxin-albumin adduct
  • Biomarker
  • Aflatoxin M1
  • Dairy cow