MONICA CATANA, LUMINITA CATANA, ENUTA IORGA, ALINA CULETU, VALENTIN IONESCU, NASTASIA BELC ASSESSMENT OF THE THERMAL STABILITY OF PATULIN IN APPLE PUREE AND OF POSSIBILITIES FOR REDUCTION OF PATULIN CONTAMINATION LEVEL THROUGH APPLE PROCESSING Apples are an important raw material for the production of puree, nectar, jam, and a widely used ingredient in composition of pastry products. Patulin is a mycotoxin that appears in moldy apples, especially, attacked by Penicillium, Aspergillus and Byssochlamys. This study aimed to evaluate the thermal stability of patulin in apple puree and the possibilities to reduce the patulin contamination level through processing apples to apple puree and nectar. Within the experiments, samples of apple puree from Jonathan apple cultivar, spiked with patulin at four concentration levels (10 mg/kg, 20 mg/kg 40 mg/kg and 80 mg/kg) were heat treated at 100 °C for 10, 15, 20 and 25 min, respectively. It was found a reduction of the patulin level, due to the thermal degradation of this mycotoxin. Apples from Golden Delicious cultivar, attacked by Penicillium expansum and contaminated with native patulin were processed to puree and nectar. Through processing of apples contaminated with patulin it was registered an important decrease of it.