Understanding natural event to improve food safety
Some fungi can grow on plants produce toxic substances for humans and animals. The most dangerous is aflatoxin, produced by the fungus Aspergillus flavus in corn, peanuts and pistachios. It is a carcinogenic and immunodepressive substance. In the natural population of Aspergillus flavus there are also individuals that do not produce the toxin. Therefore it was decided to select these "good" individuals and distribute them on the field to avoid the development of bad ones. Now there is a product that distributed in the field reduces aflatoxin contamination up to over 90%. So several food products are safe.
Sunday 20 October
From 4.45 pm to 5.45 pm CET
3.STAGE3 pav. 3
Prof. Paola Battilani
Prof. Paola Battilani graduated in agriculture at Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore (UCSC).
At UCSC Piacenza (Italy) she is full professor in Plant Pathology and leads a research group on food safety with focus on mycotoxins.
Her major professional interests are:
• Ecology and epidemiology of mycotoxin producing fungi;
• Modelling to predict the risk of mycotoxin contamination in different crops;
• Development of Decision Support Systems to mitigate mycotoxin contamination in maize, wheat, grapes;
• Impact of climate change on mycotoxin producing fungi;
• Biocontrol of Aspergillus flavus with field application of atoxigenic strains;
• Risk assessment modelling approach for mycotoxin mixtures in food and feed.
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