Size Range of Viable Fungal Particles From Aflatoxin-Contaminated Corn Aerosols.
Sorenson WG; Peach MJ; Simpson JP; Olenchock SA; Taylor G
Twelve samples of Georgia corn representing four categories of aflatoxin (1402682) content were compared for the presence of fungi. The categories were 0 to 20, 20 to 200, 200 to 400, and 400 to 800 parts per billion. An Anderson sampler was used to simulate the human respiratory system and provide information about the size of the fungal particles in the grain. Samples of the aflatoxin- contaminated corn were aerosolized and analyzed for total viable particles of Aspergillus (A.) flavus and other fungi. A. flavus was found in all samples and represented 82.9 percent of the total colonies counted. Other important fungi included a variety of Penicillium species, A. terreus, and A. fumigatus. A significant portion of the colonies arose from particles of less than 5 microns, indicating that they are of respirable size. The authors suggest that workers who handle corn and other grain contaminated by A. flavus could be at risk of respiratory infection, allergy, or toxicity.
NIOSH-Publication; Toxic-substances; Food-contamination; Oil-mists; Aerosol-mists; Risk-factors; Vegetable-oil-mists; Fungal-dusts; Respiratory-system-disorders; Physical-properties;
Division of Respiratory Disease Studies, Appalachian Laboratory for Occupational Safety and Health, NIOSH, Morgantown, West Virginia, 18 pages, 12 references