Comparative study of three different methods for the determination of aflatoxins in tahini

J Agric Food Chem. 2002 Jun 5;50(12):3375-9. doi: 10.1021/jf020005a.


Aflatoxins spiked at three different levels (6.5, 13.0, and 19.5 microg/kg) in tahini, a sesame butter, were analyzed by using three different methods: high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), fluorometry, and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). An immunoaffinity column was used for cleanup and purification of extracts prior to detection by HPLC and fluorometry. All methods were statistically evaluated for accuracy, precision, and simple correlations. Additionally, 14 tahini samples randomly obtained from Turkish retail markets were analyzed using an immunoaffinity column cleanup procedure coupled with the HPLC detection method. The fluorometric determination method involving an immunoaffinity column cleanup step was found to be highly correlated with the HPLC method (r = 0.978). Both methods were found to be effective due to their high recoveries and low variance for the prediction of total aflatoxin contamination in tahini samples. The ELISA method, due to its high variation in replicates, was found to be applicable only as a screening method. The survey study demonstrated the need for control of aflatoxin contamination of foodstuffs involving sesame seeds as an ingredient.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Aflatoxins / analysis*
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid / methods
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay / methods
  • Food Analysis / methods*
  • Food Contamination*
  • Linear Models
  • Pedaliaceae / chemistry*
  • Seeds / chemistry*
  • Spectrometry, Fluorescence
  • Turkey


  • Aflatoxins