Introduction: The aim of this study was to determine the effect of deoxynivalenol (DON), given alone or with bentonite (which eliminates mycotoxicity) in the diet of mink dams throughout mating, pregnancy, and lactation period to pelt harvesting, on the mechanical properties and geometry of their long bones.
Material and Methods: The minks were randomly assigned into two groups: a control group (not supplemented with DON, n = 15) and a group fed naturally DON-contaminated wheat and divided into three sub-groups (each sub-group n = 15), depending on bentonite dose: 0 M – sub-group fed naturally DON-contaminated wheat at a concentration of 3.7 mg kg−1 alone; 2 M – sub-group fed naturally DON-contaminated wheat at a concentration of 3.7 mg kg−1 and bentonite at a concentration of 2 kg 1000 kg−1; 0.5 M – sub-group fed naturally DON-contaminated wheat at a concentration of 3.7 mg kg−1 and bentonite at a concentration of 0.5 kg 1000 kg−1.
Results: The DON treatment reduced the length of the femur compared to the control group and reduced the bone weight dependently on the amount of bentonite supplementation. However, DON treatment reduced the MRWT and CI of the femur, irrespective of the bentonite supplementation, compared to the control. The total BTD and BMC decreased in all DON-treated groups (irrespective of the bentonite supplementation). Furthermore, the densitometric analysis showed that the main changes in BMD and BMC indicated bone loss in the proximal and distal parts of bone covering the trabecular bone; whereas when bentonite was given at the dose of 2 kg 1000 kg−1 an increase in the whole BMD and BMC was observed in the femoral midshaft.
Conclusion: Analysis of the geometrical parameters seems to indicate that endosteal resorption was delayed after bentonite supplementation. The addition of bentonite diminished the DON action on bone homeostasis in the mink dams. Thus bentonite could prevent DON-induced bone loss in a dose-dependent manner.