Maize (Bhutta) is one of the important growing cereal crops in Bangladesh. Toxigenic fungi such as Aspergillus and Fusarium infect stored maize grains. Enzyme-linked immusorbent assay (ELISA) was used to determine total aflatoxins and fumonisins contamination in stored maize grains collected from 15 Bangladeshi maize-producing areas. The highest total concentration of aflatoxins (103.07 µg/kg) and fumonisin (9.18 mg/kg) was found in Chuadanga and Gaibandha, whereas the lowest was detected for aflatoxins (1.07 µg/kg) and (0.11 mg/kg) in Dinajpur and Cumilla, respectively. The findings clearly demonstrated that aflatoxin concentrations in samples from six regions and fumonisin concentrations in samples from 10 regions were beyond the regulatory limit of aflatoxin (10 ppb) and fumonisin (1 ppm), respectively, as set by European Union (EU). However, a positive correlation between aflatoxins with toxigenic A. flavus, and fumonisins with toxigenic Fusarium spp. was observed. The fungi associated with maize grains were identified by sequencing of ITS regions. Moreover, toxigenic A. flavus was confirmed using primers specific to nor, apa2, omtA and primer FUM1 for F. proliferatum and F. oxysporum. Since the Bangladesh Food Safety Authority has not authorized any precise regulation limits for maize mycotoxin contamination, these results will serve as a benchmark for monitoring mycotoxin contamination in maize and also to develop globally practiced biocontrol approach for producing safe food and feed.
Part of the book: Maize Genetic Resources