Cytotoxicity and phytotoxicity of trichothecene mycotoxins produced by fusarium spp.

Hamed K. Abbas, Takumi Yoshizawa, W. Thomas Shier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Trichothecenes, a major class of mycotoxins produced by Fusarium, Myrothecium, and Stachybotrys species, are toxic to both plants and mammals. Simple trichothecenes, including type A (e.g., T-2 toxin) and type B (e.g., deoxynivalenol), are generally less toxic than macrocyclic trichothecenes. We sought to determine if simple trichothecenes are a potential source of candidates for development as bioherbicides, which require high phytotoxicity and low mammalian toxicity. We examined 28 simple trichothecenes invitro for phytotoxicity using a small aquatic plant, Lemna pausicostata, and for mammalian toxicity using four cultured mammalian cell lines. Several structure-activity relationships were identified, including the following two, which may be relevant to bioherbicide development: peracetylation of type B trichothecenes and de-epoxidation of type A trichothecenes both substantially reduced mammalian toxicity with little effect on phytotoxicity. It was concluded that simple trichothecenes possessing strong phytotoxicity and minimal mammalian toxicity invitro can be identified.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)68-75
Number of pages8
StatePublished - Nov 2013

Bibliographical note

Copyright 2013 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Bioherbicide
  • Cytotoxicity
  • Fusarium spp.
  • Phytotoxicity
  • Trichothecenes
  • Vomitoxin


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