Temporal and dose-response features in swine fed corn screenings contaminated with fumonisin mycotoxins

Gideon K. Motelin, Wanda M. Haschek, Daniel K. Ness, William F. Hall, Karen S. Harlin, David J. Schaeffer, Val Richard Beasley

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71 Scopus citations


Fumonisin B 1 (FB 1 ), a mycotoxin produced by Fusarium moniliforme and F. proliferatum, induces liver damage and pulmonary edema in swine. We examined the temporal and dose-response features of FB 1 toxicosis in male weanling crossbred pigs fed nutritionally balanced diets, containing corn screenings naturally contaminated with fumonisins, for 14 days. Total fumonisins (FB 1 and FB 2 ) in diets 1 through 6 were assayed at 175, 101, 39, 23, 5, and <1 ppm (below detectable concentrations), respectively. Clinical signs, serum biochemical alterations, and morphologic changes were evaluated. Pigs were weighed, and bled for hematologic and clinical chemistry evaluation on days 5 and 14. They were euthanized on day 14, or earlier if respiratory distress was observed. Respiratory distress developed in 3/5 pigs fed diet 1 between days 4 and 6 due to severe pulmonary edema and pleural effusion. Histologic evidence of hepatic injury was present in all pigs fed diets 1 and 2, 3/5 on diet 3, and 1/5 on diet 4. Serum bilirubin and cholesterol concentrations, gamma-glutamyl transferase (GGT), alkaline phosphatase (ALP), alanine aminotransferase (ALT), aspartate aminotransferase (AST), and arginase (ARG) activities were elevated in pigs fed diets 1 and 2. Based on liver histopathology, the no observed adverse effect level (NOAEL) for fumonisin toxicity in swine was <23 ppm total fumosins for the 14-day period. Based on regression analyses of the clinical chemistry profiles at 14 days, the NOAEL was <12 ppm, with ALP being the most sensitive parameter. In conclusion, pulmonary edema occurred only at the highest fumonisin concentration (175 ppm), while liver damage occurred at much lower concentrations with a NOAEL of <12 ppm.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)27-40
Number of pages14
Issue number1
StatePublished - Apr 1 1994

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Microbiology
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • veterinary (miscalleneous)


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