Human breast milk is the primary food for newborns that possess all essential nutrients for their growth and health. However, breast milk can be contaminated with various toxins including aflatoxin M1 (AFM1), a hydroxylated metabolite of aflatoxin B1 formed in the liver and excreted into the breast milk. This toxin can have immunosuppressive, mutagenic, teratogenic and carcinogenic effects. The present study aimed to investigate the level of AFM1 in human breast milk samples from Jiroft (Kerman Province), Iran.
A total of 84 human breast milk samples were collected from lactating mothers who were referred to number one clinic in Jiroft from April 2016 to January 2017. The level of AFM1 was measured using commercial enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay kits.
Aflatoxin M1 was detected in all (100%) human breast milk samples within the interval values of 3.2 to 8.8 ng/L (mean, 4.1±0.7 ng/L). The level of AFM1 in all samples was lower than the maximum tolerable limit (25 ng/L) suggested by the EU and the Codex Alimentarius Commission.
Although AFM1 is present in all human breast milk samples from the city of Jiroft, the level of this toxin is within the tolerable limit. Therefore, it seems that infants are not at risk.
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