Sterigmatocystin is produced by several species of Aspergillus, Penicillium luteum, and a Bipolaris species. Chemically, sterigmatocystin resembles the AFT and is a precursor in the biosynthesis of AFT. It has been detected at low concentrations in green coffee, moldy wheat, and in the rind of hard Dutch cheese. Sterigmatocystin is a hepatotoxin and is less potent than the AFT. It was mutagenic in the Ames test, the Rec assay, and the Bacillus subtilis assay. It can covalently bind to DNA and form DNA adducts. It has been proven that sterigmatocystin is carcinogenic to rats and mice, mainly inducing liver tumors.

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