Effects of temperature and incubation time on production of ochratoxin a by black aspergilli

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The effects of temperature (5-45°C) on the growth and production of ochratoxin A (OTA) by eighteen strains of Aspergillus section Nigri, cultured on Czapek yeast autolysate agar (CYA) and on yeast extract sucrose agar (YES), were studied for an incubation period of 30 days. Isolates were selected to include different sources and different reported abilities to produce OTA. Temperature ranges for OTA production were more restrictive than those for growth and each strain tested differed in its optimum conditions for OTA production. Aspergillus niger aggregate strains achieved maximum OTA levels in YES medium mainly at 20-25°C. The A. carbonarius strains produced the highest OTA levels in CYA medium at 15 or 20°C. Significant amounts of OTA were produced after only five days of incubation. Due to their ability to produce OTA at a wide range of temperatures, OTA can be continuously produced in the field. This fact has to be taken into account in commodities such as grapes, raisins and wine, where A. carbonarius and members of the A. niger aggregate are considered to be the main sources of the OTA contamination. © 2004 Elsevier SAS. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)861-866
JournalResearch in Microbiology
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2004


  • Aspergillus carbonarius
  • Aspergillus niger
  • Grapes
  • Ochratoxin A
  • Temperature
  • Wine


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