Antifungal effect of chitosan on the growth of Aspergillus parasiticus and production of aflatoxin B1

Octavio Cota-Arriola, Mario Onofre Cortez-Rocha, Ema Carina Rosas-Burgos, Armando Burgos-Hernández, Yolanda Leticia López-Franco, Maribel Plascencia-Jatomea*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Scopus citations


Contamination of agricultural products by toxigenic fungi and the presence of mycotoxins cause serious economic damage, and toxic effects to humans and animals. In this study the effect of chitosan as a natural alternative for the control of the fungus Aspergillus parasiticus was evaluated. Chitosans were obtained from chitin previously extracted from shrimp heads using chemical (CS) and biological (CB) processes. The chitosan yields were 5.74 and 6.20% for CS and CB methods, respectively, with an amount of residual protein and ash below 1%, low molecular weight and degree of deacetylation of 80-82%. Chitosan showed fungistatic activity against A. parasiticus, with 6.71 and 10.66 g L-1 (CI50) of CS and CB, respectively, being required to delay fungal growth by 50% at 122 h. Chitosan (CI50) inhibited both radial growth up to 122 h, and germination of spores before 8 h higher than 50%. Chitosan also increased the average diameter of the spores and hyphae (P ≤ 0.05), reduced the septation process and increased the number of mitotic divisions of spores during germination. However, compared with control, chitosan decreased (P ≤ 0.05) aflatoxin B1 production at 8 days but increased (P ≤ 0.05) the total aflatoxins production by A. parasiticus.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)937-944
Number of pages8
JournalPolymer International
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2011


  • Aflatoxins production
  • Antifungal activity
  • Aspergillus parasiticus
  • Chitosan


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