Alternaria Mycotoxins: An Overview of Toxicity, Metabolism, and Analysis in Food.
The genus Alternaria is widely distributed in the environment. Numerous species of the genus Alternaria can produce a variety of toxic secondary metabolites, called Alternaria mycotoxins. In this review, natural occurrence, toxicity, metabolism, and analytical methods are introduced. The contamination of these toxins in foodstuffs is ubiquitous, and most of these metabolites present genotoxic and cytotoxic effects. Moreover, Alternaria toxins are mainly hydroxylated to catechol metabolites and combined with sulfate and glucuronic acid in in vitro arrays. A more detailed summary of the metabolism of Alternaria toxins is presented in this work. To effectively detect and determine the mycotoxins in food, analytical methods with high sensitivity and good accuracy are also reviewed. This review will guide the formulation of maximum residue limit standards in the future, covering both toxicity and metabolic mechanism of Alternaria toxins.