Exposure assessment of the Tehran population (Iran) to zearalenone mycotoxin
Ali Reza Shafaati
Seyyed Mohsen Foroutan
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Zearalenone (ZEA) mycotoxin is a potent estrogenic metabolite. It is the primary toxin causing infertility, abortion or other breeding problems. A HPLC method was validated for ZEA in foods using a monolithic column with sample clean-up on an immunoaffinity column. A certified reference material (CRM) from FAPAS (UK) was analyzed. A survey of ZEA was performed on the 72 samples of rice, bread, puffed corn snack and wheat flour collected from Tehran retail market. The average recovery and coefficient of variation in different foods ranged 92.7-107.1 and 4.9-13.8%, respectively. The amount of ZEA in corn CRM was in the acceptable range of FAPAS. The limit of quantification was 3 ng/g for rice, bread and wheat flour and 2.7 ng/g for puffed corn snack. The retention time of zearalenone was 2.6 min. All samples had contamination level lower than the maximum tolerated level of ZEA in foods in Iran. The mean intake of ZEA from all samples was much lower than the tolerable daily intake estimated by JECFA. This is the first survey on ZEA contamination in bread and rice in Iran as well as the first study on exposure assessment of Tehran population to ZEA. © 2012 by School of Pharmacy.