Toxin binders are added in the feed to alleviate the risk of mycotoxins and other toxins.
Mycotoxins are secondary metabolites produced by certain fungi in animal feed and feed ingredients. Amongst mycotoxins, Aflatoxins are most widely spread in warm and humid conditions. Environment, growing conditions, sourcing, storage and handling poses the risk of mould growth and mycotoxins contamination in all feed ingredients. Not all mould produce mycotoxins and the ones producing are known as toxigenic moulds. The levels of toxins required to cause adverse effects vary among toxins and the immune responses of the host. Mycotoxins are known to exert synergy with other toxins and also are demonstrated to have cumulative effects over longer periods.
Mycotoxins are omnipresent and pose a threat to livestock productivity throughout the year. Various factors which affect mould growth and mycotoxin production are environmental (Humidity, Temperature, Drought, Rain), agricultural (cropping pattern, condition of soil, irrigation), others (harvesting technique, handling of grains, transportation, storage conditions).
Several methods have been tried to neutralize or detoxify mycotoxins in feed and raw materials, but with limited application and efficacy. The most practical way of minimizing their effects is by using Mycotoxin Binders or Adsorbents. Mycotoxin binders are inert chemical / biological substances capable of stable adsorption of the mycotoxins present in the feed / ground raw materials without undergoing any change, thereby rendering the mycotoxins biologically unavailable to the host.
Avitech has been a pioneer in the use of Activated carbon as a feed toxin adsorbent. A universal antidote, activated carbon is a well established, proven toxin adsorbent. Activated carbon has activity over a wide variety of mycotoxins including Aflatoxins, Ochratoxins, T2 Toxin, and others. Activated charcoal has shown great level of efficacy in binding other toxins such as pesticides, insecticides, and bacterial endotoxins apart from mycotoxins.
The adsorbent nature of Activated carbon is due to its extreme porosity. Individual carbon particles are infiltrated by extremely fine capillaries, not discernable to the naked eye. This considerably enhances the inner surface of the carbon between 500-1500 sq mt/g.
Research has shown that several clays and silicates can bind the mycotoxins by way of their porous structure and make them biologically unavailable. Organic acids possess an inhibitory influence on mould growth and thus reduces further production of mycotoxins.