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Animal Health

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Functional Additives
Friday, May 11, 2007 5:19:00 PM
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The mycotoxin threat and countering mycotoxicosis with herbs
Ayurvet Limited



Mycotoxicosis affects animals by lowering growth rate and feed conversion efficiency, suppressing reproductive potential and affecting immunity of the animals. Overt toxicosis, morbidity and death are infrequent with most economic losses being due to subtle non-specific effects that cause reduced performance and increased disease incidence.


One of the main adverse effects of mycotoxins is immune suppression. At levels higher than 0.5 ppm, aflatoxins can interfere with vaccination by reducing antibody titres. Other toxins such as ochratoxin, zearalenone, fumonisin as well as deoxynivalenol have also been proven or suggested to have immunosuppressive effects.


The immunosuppressive effects of mycotoxicosis are often difficult to recognise because the signs of disease associated with the infection are more apparent than the toxin that predisposed the infection.


Economic losses incurred by the livestock industry owing to this problem are huge. An estimated 10 percent increment in production costs can possibly occur due to exposure to mycotoxins in feeds.


Besides this, mycotoxin residues in food of animal origin are also a significant problem for animal farmers. Aflatoxin residues have been detected in cattle and pig livers, eggs and chicken meat and cow's milk at levels that can potentially cause human disease. In 1985, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations estimated that 25 percent of the world's grain supply was contaminated with mycotoxins annually.


Amelioration of mycotoxicosis is one of the biggest challenges facing the livestock industry today. A number of strategies have been employed to curb this problem, of which the most well known include use of adsorbants, fungal inhibitors and mycotoxin binders among others.


While current strategies when combined with a strict bio-security programme have brought about significant development in the countering of mycotoxins, the war has yet to be won.


The use of herbs has of late emerged as a promising way to counter mycotoxicosis. Combinations of herbs targeted at inactivation of the toxins and inhibition of toxin production by the fungi have proven effective in control of mycotoxicosis.


Toxiroak is a herbal-mineral toxin binder or powerful blend of various herbs and HSCAS present in appropriate amounts to pose a synergistic inhibitory effect on fungus and toxin. The herbs present in Toxiroak inhibit the excess growth of mould, reducing fungus quantity and hence the source of toxin.


In a nutshell, Toxiroak gives complete protection from mycotoxins in the form of:


(A)  Mould inhibitors


(B)  Biosynthesis inhibitors


(C)  Detoxification and bioneutralisation of toxins


(D)  Inactivation of toxins by chemosorption


For more of the article, please click here.


Article made possible through the contribution of Ayurvet Limited.

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