Ochratoxin/Citrinin as Nephrotoxins

  • William O. Berndt
Part of the Biodeterioration Research book series (BIOR, volume 3)


The mycotoxins are a diverse group of secondary fungal metabolites. The diversity of chemical structure suggests that toxic mold metabolites may have the potential to cause diseases either after ingestion or contact on the skin. The mycotoxicoses that result from exposure to these compounds may be expressed as dysfunction of nervous system, the liver, the kidneys or potentially many other organs. Clearly, fungal infestation is not a requirement for the production of mycotoxicoses. Although the ability of certain mycotoxins to alter renal function in man has been debated only relatively recently, human contact with fungal toxins is not a new experience. Bagger (1931) had suggested that the earliest encounter of human mycotoxicoses were the ergotism episodes of the Middle Ages. It is likely that earlier occurrences also happened, but undoubtedly the frequency of such occurrences has decreased considerably in modern times. With the development of modern storage techniques for food, fungal contamination, as well as contamination by other microorganisms, has been greatly reduced and often is not considered a serious problem. Indeed, although human mycotoxicoses have not been ignored in recent times, it is nonetheless true that a much greater effort has been expended to address the problem of fungal contamination of animal feeds.


Fungal Contamination Endemic Balkan Nephropathy Penicillic Acid Fungal Toxin Secondary Fungal Metabolite 
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.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • William O. Berndt
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PharmacologyUniversity of Nebraska Medical CenterOmahaUSA

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