Knowledge of biology notions, such as differences between autotrophic/heterotrophic organisms, prokaryotes/eukaryotes, mitosis/meiosis, animal cell/plant cell.
The role of ecological parameters in the development of fungi in pre and post harvest conditions. Effect of mushrooms on organoleptic and hygienic characteristics. This study aims to examine the fungal mycotoxins in food, the role in nutrition and human health. The proliferation of various fungi in agricultural products leads to a reduction in yield and quality with significant economic losses. Fungi produce secondary metabolites which are referred to as mycotoxins which are frequent in food products.
This course aims to provide students with scientific and technical skills, as well as critical skills aimed at assessing the phytosanitary status of foodstuffs and any risks associated with agro-food safety. In particular, the student must be able to: identify the mycotoxigenic fungi of the main foodstuffs (grains, flours and derivatives, dried fruit and fresh fruit and vegetables); learn about the biology and cellular metabolism of mycotoxigenic agents; assess the main effects of mycotoxins on humans, animals and the food chain; assess the influence of pre and post harvest technologies on toxigenic fungus infections, and perform inspections and monitoring of processing, preservation and processing environments.
Knowledge and understanding:
The student will acquire the necessary knowledge related to the biological characteristics of the main fungal mycotoxigenic species and the environmental conditions of development, he will understand the risks and the effects of fungal and mycotoxin contamination regarding to human and animal health, he will learn and will implement strategies of prevention in the agro-food field in order to promote productions with high quality standards and food safety through the application of tools and methodologies with low environmental impact.
Ability to apply knowledge and understanding:
The student must be able to predict the critical points of the production processes in which fungal contamination and mycotoxins can occur through the preparation and implementation of adequate monitoring plans. Furthermore, the student must be able to identify the corrective preventive actions and the most appropriate defense means with a view to sustainable control.
Through the study of the complex interactions that occur between fungal agents and mycotoxins in different post-harvest contexts, it will be able to develop an adequate judgment in order to intervene for a sustainable management, critically evaluating the possibilities offered by the different means of control in different contexts and phases of post-harvest, and during the preservation of foodstuffs at risk of accumulation of dangerous mycotoxins for both humans and farm animals.
The development of communication skills will be favored by achieving a full mastery of the technical-scientific terminology related to the systematic framing of the different species, to the methods of analysis, the means of control and the related mechanisms of action. This ability will also be developed through classroom discussion of case studies and the final oral exam.
The student's learning ability will be stimulated through power point presentations, case study discussion, a guided tour of a food industry.
Matta A., 1996. Fondamenti di Patologia Vegetale. PATRON EDITORE, BO.
- Dragoni I., Cantoni C., Papa A., Vallone L., 2000. Muffe alimenti e micotossicosi. Città Studi Edizioni 2000
- Marco Delledonne. Micotossine. Riconoscimento e prevenzione delle micotossicosi di interesse medico.
-- Notes taken independently in class.
Teaching material provided in class by the teacher, on specific topics.
The learning verification takes place through a practical test that involves the analysis of slides, a written test in partial progress and an oral test lasting about 30 min.
INTRODUCTION TO THE COURSE: Review of general plant pathology (definition of plant pathology, definition of disease damage, alteration; harmfulness of diseases. (0,25 CFU)
NOTES ON AGENTS OF DISEASES OF DERRATES: General information on fungal diseases; Notes on biology, on the cellular metabolism of fungi. Elements of fungus classification. (0,25 CFU)
MYCOTOXIN AND UBIQUITARY FUNGUS IN THE FOOD CHAIN: Role of ecological parameters on the development of Fungus on pre- and post-harvest products; effect of fungi on the organoleptic and hygienic characteristics of vegetable products; Fungal growth and mycotoxin formation; The most dangerous and known fungal species. (0,5 CFU)
RISK ANALYSIS: raw materials susceptible to contamination; Derived products susceptible to mycotoxin contamination; Products of animal origin potentially susceptible to contamination; Effect of the technological procedure on the level of mycotoxins. (0,5 CFU)
MYCOTOXINS: definition, general aspects and toxicity. Aflatoxins, ochratoxins, trichothecenes, patulin, fumonisins, zearalenones and minor mycotoxins. Developmental conditions, effects on foodstuffs for human and animal use. Target organs. Mycotoxicoses. (1 CFU)
EFFECTS OF MYCOTOXINS: on humans, animals and the food chain, monitoring of production environments and risk assessment for operators. (0,5 CFU)
PREVENTION AND MANAGEMENT OF MYCOTOXICOSIS: Current legislation; Prevention of the development of mycotoxin-producing fungi on the most frequently affected matrices; Pre-collection prevention; Post-harvest prevention; Biocompetitori; Risk forecasting models; detoxification methods. Evaluation methods. (1 CFU)
MONITORING: Methodologies for the detection of phytopathogenic fungi; sampling, isolation of agents and identification; sampling, sample preparation for qualitative and quantitative determinations of the main mycotoxins of foodstuffs. (Screening, Confirmation). (0,5 CFU)
Exercises: Isolation techniques and macroscopic and microscopic identification of mycotoxigenic fungi; qualitative and quantitative determination of the main mycotoxins of foodstuffs. (0,5 CFU)