on growth performances, blood parameters, systemic cytokine levels, cell stress markers and reactivity
of immune system of weaned pigs.
Growth performance was not affected by OTA consumption even if OTA levels increased in plasma,
kidney and liver. OTA diminished the protein content in the serum and increased levels of TNF-alpha
and IL-10 in plasma. HO-1 mRNA, indicative for cells stress, was decreased in the kidney but increased
in the liver. Additionally, whole blood of the animals of the OTA-group showed a decreased capacity to
respond with cytokine expression (mRNA and protein) to ex vivo challenge with LPS. In conclusion our
findings indicate that chronic ingestion with OTA-contaminated feed, even at low level, is hazardous for
the animal and virtually for human health, pig being an excellent model for human.