Commercial infant cereals contain high concentrations of endotoxins and viable Bacillus spp.

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Background: Endotoxin may cause inflammation and increased intestinal permeability in infants with immature immune systems and gut microbiota. This study analysed the presence of endotoxin together with other potentially hazardous agents in commercial infant cereals. Methods: Four porridges and six milk cereal drinks bought in Sweden were analysed for the presence of endotoxins using Endosafe MCS. The quantity of viable bacteria was determined using conventional culturing methods and the isolates were identified with Sanger sequencing. Enterotoxin producing genes were analysed through multiplex PCR and levels of mycotoxins were studied using uHPLC MS/MS. Results: The endotoxin concentration ranged from 1400 to 24200 EU/g powder. Viable bacteria were found in the products, indicating survivability of Bacillus spp in dry powders. No traces of mycotoxins were found. Conclusion: This study indicates that substantial concentrations of endotoxins are present in powdered infant cereal-based foods. Furthermore, the amount of living bacteria ingested with some of the products was high.

Original languageEnglish
Article number107367
JournalFood Control
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Microbiology
  • Microbiology in the medical area
  • Food Engineering

Free keywords

  • Endotoxin
  • Enterotoxin
  • Infant cereals
  • Microorganisms
  • Mycotoxin


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