EFSA has published a scientific opinion on public health risks related to the presence of ochratoxin A (OTA) in food – a mycotoxin naturally produced by moulds that can be found in a variety of foodstuffs including cereals, preserved meats, fresh and dried fruit, and cheese. New data that have become available since the last assessment in 2006 suggest that OTA can be genotoxic by directly damaging the DNA. Experts also confirmed that it can be carcinogenic to the kidney. Therefore experts calculated a margin of exposure (MOE). This is a tool used by risk assessors to consider possible safety concerns arising from the presence in food and feed of substances which are both genotoxic and carcinogenic.

 

 

Credit: Amanda Mills CDC

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