Cytotoxicity of Fusarium moniliforme Metabolites

  • Cecile E. F. La Grenade
  • George A. Bean
Part of the Biodeterioration Research book series (BIOR, volume 3)


There is little doubt that the genus Fusarium constitutes one of the most important groups of toxigenic fungi. Many species of Fusarium produce an array of secondary metabolites which elicit dissimilar physiological and pharmacological responses in plants and animals. Many of these are mycotoxins. More than half of the 37 trichothecenes that have been isolated are elaborated by Fusarium species (Vesonder and Hesseltine, 1985). Fusarium moniliforme is one such member of this genus. It is a common, ubiquitous fungal pathogen to many plants, including corn (Zea mays); it causes corn stalk and ear rot diseases (Ayers et al., 1972). The range of secondary metabolites produced by F. moniliforme includes mycotoxins, antibiotics, phytotoxins and phytoalexins. Although the fungus is known to be internally seed borne in apparently healthy corn kernels (Foley, 1962; Marasas et al., 1979), it has been correlated with increased human esophageal cancer risk in China and Southern Africa (Marasas et al., 1984), and has been implicated as the causative agent of equine leucoencephalomalacia (ELEM) (Marasas et al., 1976). Both moniliforme (Cole, 1973) and Fusarin C (Wiebe, 1981) have been rejected as the causative agent of ELEM. Direct and unequivocal evidence linking a mycotoxin of F. moniliforme with ELEM has been shown by Marasas et al., 1988.


Fusarium Species Fusaric Acid Baby Hamster Kidney Fusarium Moniliforme Corn Stalk 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Ayers, J.E., Nelson, P.E., and Krause, R.A. (1972). Fungi associated with corn stalk rot in Pennsylvania in 1970 and 1971. Plant Dis. Rep., 56, 836–839.Google Scholar
  2. Balan, J., Fuska, J., Kuhr, I. and Kuhrova, (1970). Bikaverin, an antibiotic from Gibberella fujikuroi. Effective against Leishmania brasilensis. Folia Microbiologia. 15, 479–484.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bezuidenhout, S.C., Wentzel, C.A., Gelderblom, C.P., Gorst-Allman, C.P., Horak, P.M., Marasas, W.F.O., Spiteller, G., and Vleggaar, R. (1988). Structure elucidation of the Fumonisins, mycotoxins from Fusarium moni1iforme. J. Chem. Soc. Chem. Commun. 11, 743–745.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Cole, R.J., Kirksey, J.W., Cutler, H.G., Doupnik, B.L., and Peckham, J.C. (1973). Toxin from Fusarium moniliforme: Effects on plants and animals. Science. NY 179, 1324.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Foley, D.C. (1962). Systemic infection of corn by Fusarium moniliforme. Phytopathol., 52, 870–872.Google Scholar
  6. Gaumann, E. (1975). Fusaric acid as a wilt toxin. Phytopathol., 47, 342–357.Google Scholar
  7. Gelderblom, W.C.A., Jaskiewicz, K., Marasas, W.F.O., Thiel, P.G., Horak, R.M., Vleggaar, R., and Kriek, N.P.J. (1988). Fumonisins: Novel myrotoxins with cancer promoting activity produced by Fusarium moniliforme.Google Scholar
  8. Hesseltine, C.W., and Bothast, R.J. (1977). Mold development in ears of corn from tasseling to harvest. Mycologia, 69, 328–340.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Marasas, W.F.O., Kellerman, T.S., Pienaar, J.G., and Nande, T.W. (1976). Leukoencephalomalacia: a mycotoxicosis of equidae caused by Fusarium moniliforme Sheldon. Onderstepoort J. Vet. Res., 43, 113–122.Google Scholar
  10. Marasas, W.F.O., Kriek, N.P.J., Wiggins, V.M., Steyn, P.S., Towers, D.K., and Hastie, T.J. (1979). Incidence and geographic distribution and toxigenicity of Fusarium species in South African corn. Phytopathol., 69, 118–1185.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Marasas, W.F.O., Kriek, N.P.J., Fincham, J.E., and Van Rensberg, S.J. (1984). Primary liver cancer and oesophaegal basal cell hyper plasa in rats caused by Fusarium moniliforme. Int. J. Cancer. 34, 383–387.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Marasas, W.F.O., Kellerman, T.S., Gelderblom, W.C.A., Coetzer, J.A.W., Thiel, P.G., and Van der Lugt, J.J. (1988). Leucoencephalomalacia in a horse induced by Fumonosin B, isolated from Fusarium moniliforme. Onderspoort J. Vet. Res. 55, 197–203.Google Scholar
  13. Mirocha, C.J., Christensen, CM., and Nelson, G.H. (1969). Biosynthesis of the fungal estrogen F-2 and a naturally occurring derivative (F-3) by Fusarium moniliforme. Appl. Microbiol., 17, 482–483.Google Scholar
  14. Mirocha, C.J., and Christensen, C.M. (1974). Oestrogenic mycotoxin synthesized by Fusarium. p. 129–148 In I.F.H. Purchase (ed) Mycotoxins, Elsevier, Amsterdam.Google Scholar
  15. Robb, J., Norval, M. (1984). The use of a cytotoxicity test as a screening test for mycotoxins In Lacey, J. (ed). Trichothecenes and Other Mycotoxins, Wiley & Sons, NY.Google Scholar
  16. Vesonder, R.F., and Hesseltine, C.W. (1985) Metabolites of Fusarium. In Nelson, P.E., Toussoun, T.A., Cook, R.J. Ed. Fusarium: Diseases, Biology and Taxonomy, pp. 350–364. Penn. State Press. Univ. Pk, PA.Google Scholar
  17. Wiebe, L.A. and Bjeldan, F.F. (1981). Fusarin C, a mutagen from Fusarium moniliforme grown on corn. J. Fd. Sci., 46, 1424–1426.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Yabuta, T., and Mayashi, T. (1939). Biochemical studies of bakanae fungus on cell. II. Isolation of gibberellin, the active principle which produces slender rice seedlings. J. Agric. Chem. Soc., Japan 15, 527–566.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cecile E. F. La Grenade
    • 1
  • George A. Bean
    • 2
  1. 1.Food Science ProgramHolzapfel Hall University of MarylandCollege ParkUSA
  2. 2.Department of BotanyUniversity of MarylandCollege ParkUSA

Personalised recommendations