This paper principally concerns poisonous symbiotic and parasitic fungi attacking foodstuffs, and includes those containing the poison within themselves, for example, ergot, and those producing harmful substances in the foodstuffs on which they grow.
It commences with a historical survey of records of fungus-infected foodstuffs, followed by a consideration of the toxic constituents of fungi and infected foodstuffs, and immunity to such poisoning, both natural and acquired.
Details are then presented, in tabular form, of experiments conducted to determine the harmful effects of fungus-infected foodstuffs. These do not lend themselves to abstraction and the original should be consulted by those interested.
According to the author, all fungus-infected foodstuffs should be considered poisonous until extensive feeding experiments have shown the contrary to be the case. Some cases of suspected food poisoning appear to be either botulism or parabotulism. So-called " fresh hay poisoning " is still a mystery. Different animals display marked differences in susceptibility to fungus-infected foodstuffs. Regarding harmful mouldy foodstuffs, it is stated that it could be fed to some animals with impunity, provided that the quantity fed did not exceed 10 per cent. of the total ration.
The toxicity of Lolium temulentum (darnel) to man and animals is due to an alkaloid, temulin, present in grain attacked by Endoconidium temulentum. Two rabbits, a pig and a dog fed on fungus-infected darnel suffered no ill effects.
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