Aspergillus flavus is a frequent contaminant of maize grain. We isolated this fungus, determined the colony morphology and species (by internal transcribed spacer sequencing) and measured the aflatoxin content. The selected A. flavus fungi were placed into two groups, toxigenic and atoxigenic; both appeared similar morphologically, except that the atoxigenic group lacked sclerotia. An essential oil fumigation test with clove and cinnamon oils as antifungal products was performed on fungal conidial discs and fungal colonies in Petri plates. Cinnamon oil at 2.5 to 5.0 μL/plate markedly inhibited the mycelial growth from conidial discs of both strains, whereas clove oil showed less activity. The oils had different effects on fungal mycelia. The higher clove fumigation doses of 10.0 to 20.0 μL/plate controlled fungal growth, while cinnamon oil caused less inhibition. Compared with atoxigenic groups, toxigenic A. flavus responded stably. Within abnormal A. flavus hyphae, the essential oils degenerated the hyphal morphology, resulting in exfoliated flakes and shrinkage, which were related to fungal membrane injury and collapse of vacuoles and phialide. The treatments, especially those with cinnamon oil, increased the electroconductivity, which suggested a weak mycelium membrane structure. Moreover, the treatments with essential oils reduced the ergosterol content in mycelia and the aflatoxin accumulation in the culture broth. The fumigations with clove and cinnamon oils inhibited the development of both conidia and colonies of A. flavus in dose-dependent manners.
Natural product, Antifungal, Aflatoxin, Storage fungi
Share This Article
© The Author(s) 2021. Open Access. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License which permits unrestricted use, sharing, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.