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Pediatría (Asunción)

On-line version ISSN 1683-9803


ARRUA, Andrea Alejandra et al. Presence of aflatoxin M1 in infant milk formulas marketed in the metropolitan area of Asunción, Paraguay. Pediatr. (Asunción) [online]. 2021, vol.48, n.1, pp.37-43. ISSN 1683-9803.


Aflatoxin M1 (AFM1) is a toxic metabolite derived from aflatoxin B. Its ingestion in infants has been related to growth retardation, increased susceptibility to infectious diseases, reduced immunization efficiency, and cirrhosis. In Paraguay, exclusive breastfeeding is recommended up to 6 months of age, however, different brands of infant formulas targeted at this age range are marketed.


To detect and quantify the presence of AFM1 in infant formulas marketed in the Metropolitan Area.

Materials and Methods:

Fluid (n = 18) and powder (n = 91) formulas for infants aged 0 to 12 months were purchased from pharmacies and supermarkets in the Metropolitan Area of Asunción and were analyzed using the enzyme-linked immunoaffinity assay (ELISA). Results: 9.75% (0 to 6 months) and 2% (6 to 12 months) of the powdered milk formulas and 100% of the fluid formulas were positive for AFM1. The median content of AFM1 in powder formulas was 1820 ng/kg and 510 ng/kg in brands A and B, while in liquid formulas it was 31.8 ng/kg and 33.6 ng/kg for the two brands analyzed respectively (p = 0.0001).


AFM1 was detected in all the liquid formulas analyzed, and in 2 and 9.7% of the powder formulas of brands A and B, respectively. The levels of AFM1 were higher in the powder formulas.

Keywords : Aflatoxins; infants; formulated foods; food poisoning.

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