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Although various animal tissues are used for bioassay of aflatoxins (B1, B2, G1, G2), a rapid bioassay dependent upon a plant part's response does not exist. Both pollen germination (G) and tube elongation (TE) were enhanced in a 3.0 mM KH2PO4 (K)-containing but AFB1-lacking, modified Dickinson's medium. The B1 did not affect G when K was withheld but K supplementation impaired G above 15 micrograms/ml B1. Without K, 5-20 stimulated but 25 and 30 micrograms/ml B1 inhibited TE which was suppressed by every B1 conc tested in K-containing medium. Addition of NaH2PO4(N) instead of K to medium did not promote G. Slight G stimulation occurred at 16.6 micrograms/ml mixed aflatoxins (MA) in medium lacking either K or N but low G inhibitions were observed with K or N. The MA at 33.3 micrograms/ml reduced G 2.5% in K's of N's absence and 26 or 17% in their presence. While K did not stimulate TE without MA, N did 26%. At 16.6 and 33.3 micrograms/ml MA, TE was reduced 19, 6, 19% and 24, 25, 31%, respectively, in control, K- and N- media. Pollen G and TE were markedly sensitive to G1. Significant inhibitions of Zea mays seed G were observed at 5.8 and 11.6 micrograms/ml B1 but not root elongation (RE) from 0.4-11.6 micrograms/ml. The MA (31.5 micrograms/ml) administered for 72-240 hr did not influence either Arachis hypogeae seed G or RE. However, imbibing 5 cultivars each of Avena sativa (65-117 hr) and Hordeum vulgare (39-89 hr) inhibited RE 4/15-62%. Thus, except for Z. mays, pollen G and TE appear to be more B1-sensitive than seed G and RE. But, the pollen bioassay is less sensitive than both certain animal bioassays (0.025 micrograms/ml) and analytical methodologies (10 pg.).

Source Citation

Dashek, W. V., Harman, R. L., Adlestein, L. B., Morton, W. A., Rapisarda, B. M., Chancey, J. C., & Llewellyn, G. C. (1981). Use of Lilium longiflorum, cv. ace pollen germination and tube elongation as a bioassay for the hepatocarcinogens, aflatoxins. Environmental Health Perspectives, 40, 267–278.



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