Human exposure to mycotoxins and their masked forms through cereal-based foods in Belgium

M. De Boevre, L. Jacxsens, C. Lachat, M. Eeckhout, J.D. Di Mavungu, K. Audenaert, P. Maene, G. Haesaert, P. Kolsteren, B. De Meulenaer, S. De Saeger

    Research output: Contribution to journalA1: Web of Science-articlepeer-review


    In the present study, a quantitative dietary exposure assessment of mycotoxins and their masked forms was conducted on a national representative sample of the Belgian population using the contamination data of cereal-based foods. Cereal-based food products (n=174) were analysed for the occurrence of deoxynivalenol, 3-acetyldeoxynivalenol, 15-acetyldeoxynivalenol, zearalenone, alpha-zearalenol, beta-zearalenol, T-2-toxin, HT-2-toxin, and their respective masked forms, including, deoxynivalenol-3-glucoside, zearalenone-4-glucoside, alpha-zearalenol-4-glucoside, beta-zearalenol-4-glucoside and zearalenone-4-sulfate. Fibre-enriched bread, bran-enriched bread, breakfast cereals, popcorn and oatmeal were collected in Belgian supermarkets according to a structured sampling plan and analysed during the period from April 2010 to October 2011. The habitual intake of these food groups was estimated from a national representative food intake survey. According to a probabilistic exposure analysis, the mean (and P95) mycotoxin intake for the sum of the deoxynivalenol-equivalents, zearalenone-equivalents, and the sum of HT-2-and T-2-toxin for all cereal-based foods was 0.1162 (0.4047, P95), 0.0447 (0.1568, P95) and 0.0258 (0.0924, P95)mugkg-1bodyweightday-1, respectively. These values were below the tolerable daily intake (TDI) levels for deoxynivalenol, zearalenone and the sum of T-2 and HT-2 toxin (1.0, 0.25 and 0.1mugkg-1bodyweightday-1, respectively). The absolute level exceeding the TDI for all cereal-based foods was calculated, and recorded 0.85%, 2.75% and 4.11% of the Belgian population, respectively.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalToxicology Letters
    Issue number3
    Pages (from-to)281-292
    Number of pages12
    Publication statusPublished - 2013


    • Food consumption
    • Exposure
    • Cereals
    • Mycotoxins
    • Contamination
    • Feed intake
    • Probability
    • Tolerability
    • Belgium
    • Europe-West


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