Aspergillus flavus

Health Effects

This fungus is associated with aspergillosis of the lungs (5, 26) and/or disseminated aspergillosis (5). It is occasionally identified as the cause of corneal, otomycotic, and nasoorbital infections (26).


It is reported to be allergenic (7).

Growth Indoors

Grows on moldy corn and peanuts, and found in water damaged carpets.

Outdoor Location

Found in warm soil, foods, and dairy products (5).

Potential Toxin Production

Some strains are capable of producing a group of mycotoxins in the aflatoxin group. Aflatoxins are known animal carcinogens. There is limited evidence to suggest that this toxin is a human carcinogen. The toxin is poisonous to humans by ingestion. It may also result in occupational disease via inhalation (27). Experiments have indicated that it is teratogenic and mutagenic (20). It is toxic to the liver (1527). The production of the fungal toxin in dependent on the growth conditions and the substrate used as a food source.

Spore Size

Conidia dimensions 3-6 microns (5) or 3-5 microns (26).

Water Activity

0.78 (5, 32).

Mold Reference Key

Abbreviation Reference
Aw Water Activity (Equilibrium relative humidity/100)
E Paul Ellringer
MAC McGregor Pearce - personal experience
NC Neil Carlson - personal experience
(1-27) Refer to Fungal Reference page

N. Carlson 9/92; Rev. 4/93, 7/93, 9/93, 1/94, 2/94,2/95,4/95, 5/96, 7/96

Aspergillus flavus