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Title: Disruption of sphingolipid metabolism in non-human primates consuming diets of fumonisin-containing Fusarium moniliforme culture material
Authors: Shephard, Gordon Seymour 
Van der Westhuizen, L 
Thiel, PG 
Gelderblom, W.C.A. 
Marasas, Walter F.O 
Van Schalkwyk, Dirk J 
Issue Date: 1996
Publisher: Toxicon
Abstract: The fumonisin mycotoxins are produced by Fusarium moniliforme Sheldon, a contaminant of corn worldwide. The two most abundant analogues (fumonisins B1 and B2) are known to be potent inhibitors of sphingosine N-acyltransferase (ceramide synthase) and hence to disrupt de novo sphingolipid biosynthesis. The sphingoid bases, sphingosine and sphinganine (and hence their ratio), were measured at varying intervals over a period of 60 weeks in the serum of non-human primates (vervet monkeys; Cercopithecus aethiops) which were consuming diets containing ‘low’ and ‘high’ amounts of F. moniliforme culture material, such that their total daily fumonisin intake was approximately 0.3 and 0.8 mg/kg body weight/day, respectively. Although no significant differences were found in the serum levels of sphingosine compared to controls, serum sphinganine levels in the experimental groups (mean of 219 nM and 325 nM, respectively) were significantly (P = 0.02) elevated above the levels in controls (mean 46 nM). As a consequence, the ratio sphinganine:sphingosine was significantly (P = 0.003) elevated from a mean of 0.43 in the control group to 1.72 and 2.57 in the experimental groups, respectively. Similar changes in sphingolipid profiles were also measured in urine with an increase of the ratio from 0.87 in controls to 1.58 and 2.17 in the experimental groups, although the differences were not statistically significant. Hence, the disruption of sphingolipid biosynthesis in vervet monkeys by fumonisins in culture material added to their diet can effectively be monitored in the serum as an elevation of the sphinganine:sphingosine ratio.
ISSN: 0041-0101
Appears in Collections:HWSci - Journal Articles (DHET subsidised)

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