Effects of mycotoxins
on animal health and productivity

Knowing the effects that mycotoxins have on animal health and productivity is essential to prevent the enormous economic losses that are derived from them.


Zoila Coloma Adaniya MV. MSc (Lima – Perú)

General Manager – ZC Consulting.



Since the first case of mycotoxicosis reported in England, in 1960, where more than 100.000 turkeys died (Austwick, 1978), the importance of mycotoxins in animal production has become clear. Currently, producers face several challenges that compromise the profitability and the growth of their investment.


It has been determined that mycotoxins can lead to annual losses of up to US$ 1.200 million (IITA, 2012), which suggests that mycotoxins can cause significant losses among productive processes and this should be assessed.


Why is it so complicated to control mycotoxins?


The mechanism through which mycotoxins generate their toxic effects isn’t entirely elucidated, due to their chemical structures and target organs. There can be several responses depending on:





Additionally, different responses in individuals from the same population have been observed.



Most mycotoxins can cause lipid peroxidation, damage in the function and the structural membranes of cells, and induce apoptosis. Additionally, they can also lead to immunosuppression, hyperestrogenism, hepatotoxicity, nephrotoxicity, neurotoxicity and genotoxicity (Mallmann y Dilkin, 2007; Tabbu, 2015).


We know that, in natural conditions, we can find low to moderate levels of contamination, which makes it more challenging to recognize the effects associated with chronic intoxication.


Which is the possible economic impact of mycotoxins in animal production?




Micotoxicosis prevention
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