Prevalence of Fumonisin Contamination in Corn and Corn-based Feeds in Taiwan

  • Cheng, Yeong-Hsiang (Department of Animal Science, National I-Lan Institute of Technology) ;
  • Wu, Jih-Fang (Department of Production Management, Pig Research Institute Taiwan) ;
  • Lee, Der-Nan (Department of Animal Science, National I-Lan Institute of Technology) ;
  • Yang, Che-Ming J. (Department of Animal Science, National I-Lan Institute of Technology)
  • Received : 2001.08.17
  • Accepted : 2001.10.18
  • Published : 2002.04.01


The purpose of this study was to investigate the prevalence of fumonisin contamination in corn and corn-based feeds in Taiwan. A total of 233 samples was collected from 8 feed mill factories located in four different regions in Taiwan. The presence of fumonisin $B_1$ ($FB_1$) and $B_2$ ($FB_2$) was determined by thin layer chromatograph, while the total fumonisin content was determined using immuno-affinity column cleanup and fluorometer quantitation. Our results showed that 55 samples of swine feeds had the highest percentage of incidence of $FB_1$ and $FB_2$ (41.8% and 41.8%, respectively), followed by 66 samples of duck feeds (40.9% and 37.8%). However, the percentage of incidence of $FB_1$ and $FB_2$ was much lower in 43 samples of broiler feeds (23.2% and 13.9%) and 69 samples of corn (17.3% and 10.1%). Corn and duck feeds were found to have a significant higher level of means of total fumonisins ($5.4{\pm}1.5$ and $5.8{\pm}0.6$ ppm, respectively) than swine feeds ($2.9{\pm}0.4$ ppm) and broiler feeds ($3.0{\pm}0.5$ ppm). Comparing fumonisins distribution in different regions, the highest percentage of $FB_1$ incidence (39.2%) was found in the eastern region of Taiwan, and total fumonisins level ($4.5{\pm}0.7$ ppm) was significantly higher than other regions. However, the highest percentage of $FB_2$ incidence (32.0%) was found in the central region of Taiwan. Trimonthly analysis of data showed that both high percentage of $FB_1$ and $FB_2$ incidence (39.3% and 37.7%) and total concentration of fumonisin ($5.7{\pm}0.4$ ppm) were found in the period of Jan. to Mar., The incidence and concentration were significantly higher than other trimothly periods. These results indicate that fumonisin B mycotoxins are both widespread and persistent in feed-grade corn and corn-based feeds in Taiwan.


Fumonisins;Corn;Corn-Based Feeds;Taiwan


Supported by : Council of Agriculture


  1. Harrison, L. R., B. M. Colvin, J. T. Greene, L. E. Newman and J. R. Cole. 1990. Pulmonary edema and hydrothorax in swine produced by fumonisin $B_1$, a toxic metabolite of Fusarium moniliforme. J. Vet. Diagn. Invert. 2:217-221.
  2. Jackson, M. A. and G. A. Bennett. 1990. Production of fumonisin $B_1$ by Fusarium moniliforme, NRRL 13616 in submerged culture. Appl. Environ. Microbiol. 56:2296-2298.
  3. Murphy, P. A., L. G. Rice and P. F. Ross. 1993. Fumonisin $B_1$, Fumonisin $B_2$ and Fumonisin $B_3$ content of Iowa, Wisconsin and Illinois corn and corn screenings. J. Agric. Food Chem. 41:263-266.
  4. Osweiler, G. D., P. F. Ross, T. M. Wilson, P. E. Nelson, S. T. Witte, T. L. Carson, L. G. Rice and H. A. Nelson. 1992. Characterization of an epizootic of pulmonary edema in swine associated with fumonisin in corn screenings. J. Vet. Diagn. Invest. 4:53-59.
  5. Smith, J. E., G. Solomons, C. Lewis and J. G. Anderson. 1995. The role of mycotoxins in human and animal nutrition and health. Natural Toxins. 3:187-192.
  6. Steyn, P. S. 1995. Mycotoxins, general view, chemistry and structure. Toxicol. Lett. 82-83:843-851.
  7. Yamashita, A., T. Yoshizawa, Y. Aiura, P. C. Sanchez, E. I. Dizon and R. H. Arim. 1995. Fusarium mycotoxins (fumonisins, nivalenol, and zearalenone) and aflatoxins in corn from Southeast Asia. Bioscience. Biotech. Biochem. 59:1804-1807.
  8. Yoshizawa, T., A. Yamashita and Y. Lou. 1994. Fumonisin occurrence in corn from high and low-risk areas for human oesophageal cancer in China. Appl. Environ. Microbiol. 60:1626-1629.
  9. Shephard, G. S., P. G. Thiel, S. Stackenstrom and E. W. Sydenham. 1996. Worldwide survey of fumonisin contamination of corn and corn-based products. J. Assoc. Off. Anal. Chem. 79:671-687.
  10. Alberts, J. F., W. C. A. Gelderblom, P. G. Thiel, W. F. O. Marasas, D. J. van Schalkwyk and Y. Behrend. 1990. Effects of temperature and incubation period on the production of fumonisin $B_1$ by Fusarium moniliforme. Appl. Environ. Microbiol. 56:1729-1733.
  11. Chu, F. S. and G. Y. Li. 1994. Simultaneous occurrence of fumonisin $B_1$ and other mycotoxins in moldy corn collected from the People's Republic of China in regions with high incidences of esophageal cancer. Appl. Environ. Microbiol. 60:847-852.
  12. Gelderblom, W. C. A., K. Jaskiewicz, W. F. O. Marasas, P. G. Thiel, R. M. Horak, R. Vleggaar and N. P. J. Kriek. 1988. Fumonisins--Novel mycotoxins with cancer-promoting activity produced by Fusarium moniliforme. Appl. Environ. Microbiol. 54:1806-1811.
  13. Doko, M. B. and A. Visconti. 1994. Occurrence of fumonisins $B_1$ and $B_2$ in corn and corn-based human foodstuffs in Italy. Food Additives Contaminants. 11:433-439.
  14. Tseng, T. C., K. L. Lee, T. S. Deng, C. Y. Liu and J. W. Huang. 1995. Production of fumonisins by Fusarium species of Taiwan. Mycopathologia. 130:117-121.
  15. Berry, C. L. 1988. The pathology of mycotoxins. J. Pathol. 154:301-311.
  16. Bezuidenhout, S. C., W. C. A. Gelderblom, C. P. Gorst-Allman, R. M. Horak, W. F. O. Marasas, G. Spiteller and R. J. Vleggaar. 1988. Structure elucidation of the fumonisins, mycotoxins from Fusarium moniliforme. J. Chem. Soc. Chem. Commun. pp. 743-745.
  17. Tseng, T. C. and C. Y. Liu. 1997. Occurrence of fumonisin $B_1$ and $B_2$ in corn-based foodstuffs in Taiwan. Mycopathologia. 137:57-61.
  18. Kellerman, T. S., W. F. O. Marasas, P. G. Thiel, W. C. A. Gelderblom, M. E. Cawood and J. A. W. Coetzer. 1990. Leukoencephalomalacia in two horses induced by oral dosing of Fumonisin $B_1$. Onderstepoort J. Vet. Res. 57:269-275.
  19. Gelderblom, W. C. A., N. P. J. Kriek, W. F. O. Marasas and P. G. Thiel. 1991. Toxicity and carcinogenicity of the Fusarium moniliforme metabolite, fuminisin $B_1$, in rats. Carcinogenesis. 12:1247-1251.

Cited by

  1. Effect of fumonisins on macrophage immune functions and gene expression of cytokines in broilers vol.60, pp.4, 2006,