About this Research Topic
Health safety of food and feed is one of the most important criteria for their quality. The important role is played by agricultural crops as a source of food and feed. The quality of feed is in turn important for animal health, the environment and food safety of animal origin. Fungi belonging to Fusarium genera are widespread in crops causing plant diseases and producing toxic metabolites. Fusarium species can colonize plants during their growth on the field and cause serious damage in terms of yields and quality of harvested grains. One of the most important fungal diseases of wheat and other cereals in the world is Fusarium Head Blight caused mainly by the fungal pathogens Fusarium graminearum and Fusarium culmorum. In addition to this problem, these fungi produce mycotoxins, getting into food and feed. The most important Fusarium mycotoxins include trichothecenes, zearalenone and fumonisin, primarily because of their prevalence, but also toxic effect to humans and animals. However these fungi produce also other mycotoxins such as moniliformin, bovericin, enniantin or fusarins. Food and feed can be contaminated with mycotoxins at various stages in the food and feed chain. Contamination of food and feed mycotoxin concerns the whole world and is a serious problem with both the health safety and economic loss. It is estimated that 25% of the crop in the world each year are contaminated with these metabolites, the problem affects both industrialized countries and developing countries.
The aim of this Research Topic of Frontiers in Microbiology is to publish state of the art research about occurrence of Fusarium species and their mycotoxins in the whole food and feed chain starting from the crops as well as implications for health and economic aspect. This research topic highlights the current knowledge on the plant diseases caused by Fusarium fungi as well as all aspects of Fusarium mycotoxins contamination of crops, food and feed, taking into account decontamination methods.
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