T-2 and HT-2 toxins are two of the most toxic members of type-A trichothecenes, produced by a number of Fusarium species. The occurrence of these mycotoxins was studied in barley samples during a survey carried out in the 2011–2014 growing seasons in climatically different regions in Italy. The percentage of samples found positive ranges from 22% to 53%, with values included between 26 and 787 µg/kg. The percentage of samples with a T-2 and HT-2 content above the EU indicative levels for barley of 200 µg/kg ranges from 2% to 19.6% in the 2011–2014 period. The fungal species responsible for the production of these toxins in 100% of positive samples has been identified as Fusarium langsethiae, a well-known producer of T-2 and HT-2 toxins. A positive correlation between the amount of F. langsethiae DNA and of the sum of T-2 and HT-2 toxins was found. This is the first report on the occurrence of F. langsethiae—and of its toxic metabolites T-2 and HT-2—in malting barley grown in Italy.
Morcia, C., Tumino, G., Ghizzoni, R., Badeck, F. W., Lattanzio, V. M. T., Pascale, M., & Terzi, V. (2016). Occurrence of Fusarium langsethiae and T-2 and HT-2 toxins in Italian malting barley. Toxins, 8(8). https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins8080247