Organisms can sometimes produce natural toxins that can contaminate livestock. These toxins are known as:
- Mycotoxins often found in crops such as grains, fruits, and nuts
- Marine biotoxins found in waters and seafood
Mycotoxins are a metabolite by-product of mold. Its formation is highly dependent on regional temperatures, rainfall, moisture levels, storage, and transportation conditions of raw and finished food products. The common toxins include aflatoxin, deoxynivalenol (DON/vomitoxin), fumonisin, ochratoxin, T-2/HT-2 and zearalenone (F-2). Chronic toxicity has been shown to result in various diseases, including cancer.
Marine biotoxins (microcystins, nodularins, saxitoxins, anatoxin-a, anatoxin-a(s), cylindrospermopsin) are a significant concern in warm, nutrient-rich water conditions as these conditions are ideal blooming ground for cyanobacteria (also known as blue-green algae). Interaction or consumption of biotoxin contaminated water could cause liver damage or potentially other health issues.
Given the danger of these toxins, both mycotoxins and marine toxins are among the most critical topics in food safety. As such laboratories are constantly challenged to seek creative approaches to rapidly detect these toxins to ensure minimal impact.
The Steady Pursuit to Detect Toxins
SCIEX mycotoxin and natural toxin testing solutions are developed to detect even trace levels of mycotoxin presence in food samples. With the right tools, you can now screen for dozens of toxins in dozens of different types of food and water samples, with sensitively and reliably, on a single system.
The analysis of these toxins demands cutting-edge technologies to analyze its diverse compounds as well as to detect toxins at trace levels, all within a single solution. For that reason, LC-MS/MS is the preferred weapon of choice to monitor mycotoxins and marine biotoxins. At SCIEX, we offer integrated solutions to help high throughput laboratories ensure food safety.