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Of sick turkeys, kwashiorkor, malaria, perinatal mortality, heroin addicts and food poisoning: research on the influence of aflatoxins on child health in the tropics.

Abstract

Similarities between the geographical and climatic prevalences of kwashiorkor and of exposure to dietary aflatoxins, and between the biochemical, metabolic and immunological derangements in kwashiorkor and those in animals exposed to aflatoxins, prompted investigation of the associations between kwashiorkor and aflatoxins. Studies in Africa in the 1980s indicated a role for these toxins in the pathogenesis of the disease. Paediatric cases of kwashiorkor are less prone to severe Plasmodium falciparum malaria than normal children. In mice infected with P. berghei, aflatoxin exposure inhibits parasite growth and ameliorates morbidity. Aflatoxins occur in < or = 40% of samples of breast milk from tropical Africa, usually as low concentrations of the relatively non-toxic derivatives of aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) but sometimes as high concentrations of the very toxic AFB1. This could explain kwashiorkor in breast-fed babies. Aflatoxin exposure occurs in > or = 30% of pregnancies in tropical Africa and the toxins are often in cord blood, sometimes at extremely high concentrations. Aflatoxins are now incriminated in neonatal jaundice and there is circumstantial evidence that they cause perinatal death and reduced birthweight. Aflatoxin-induced immunosuppresion may explain the aggressive behaviour of HIV infection in Africa. There are similarities between observations on HIV cases in Africa and those on heroin addicts in Europe, where 'street' heroin is frequently contaminated with aflatoxin. Aflatoxins were found in 20% of random urine samples from heroin addicts in the U.K. and the Netherlands. Aflatoxins have also been incriminated in episodes of food poisoning which have been associated with serious morbidity and mortality, particularly among young children.

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  • Authors+Show Affiliations

    University of Liverpool, U.K. ralphgh@liv.ac.uk

    Source

    MeSH

    Adolescent
    Adult
    Aflatoxins
    Africa
    Aged
    Animals
    Child
    Child, Preschool
    Environmental Exposure
    Female
    HIV Infections
    Heroin Dependence
    Humans
    Infant
    Infant, Newborn
    Kwashiorkor
    Malaria, Falciparum
    Male
    Mice
    Middle Aged
    Milk, Human
    Poultry
    Poultry Diseases
    Pregnancy
    Prenatal Exposure Delayed Effects
    Swine

    Pub Type(s)

    Journal Article
    Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
    Review

    Language

    eng

    PubMed ID

    9625935

    Citation

    Hendrickse, R G.. "Of Sick Turkeys, Kwashiorkor, Malaria, Perinatal Mortality, Heroin Addicts and Food Poisoning: Research On the Influence of Aflatoxins On Child Health in the Tropics." Annals of Tropical Medicine and Parasitology, vol. 91, no. 7, 1997, pp. 787-93.
    Hendrickse RG. Of sick turkeys, kwashiorkor, malaria, perinatal mortality, heroin addicts and food poisoning: research on the influence of aflatoxins on child health in the tropics. Ann Trop Med Parasitol. 1997;91(7):787-93.
    Hendrickse, R. G. (1997). Of sick turkeys, kwashiorkor, malaria, perinatal mortality, heroin addicts and food poisoning: research on the influence of aflatoxins on child health in the tropics. Annals of Tropical Medicine and Parasitology, 91(7), pp. 787-93.
    Hendrickse RG. Of Sick Turkeys, Kwashiorkor, Malaria, Perinatal Mortality, Heroin Addicts and Food Poisoning: Research On the Influence of Aflatoxins On Child Health in the Tropics. Ann Trop Med Parasitol. 1997;91(7):787-93. PubMed PMID: 9625935.
    * Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
    TY - JOUR T1 - Of sick turkeys, kwashiorkor, malaria, perinatal mortality, heroin addicts and food poisoning: research on the influence of aflatoxins on child health in the tropics. A1 - Hendrickse,R G, PY - 1998/6/17/pubmed PY - 1998/6/17/medline PY - 1998/6/17/entrez SP - 787 EP - 93 JF - Annals of tropical medicine and parasitology JO - Ann Trop Med Parasitol VL - 91 IS - 7 N2 - Similarities between the geographical and climatic prevalences of kwashiorkor and of exposure to dietary aflatoxins, and between the biochemical, metabolic and immunological derangements in kwashiorkor and those in animals exposed to aflatoxins, prompted investigation of the associations between kwashiorkor and aflatoxins. Studies in Africa in the 1980s indicated a role for these toxins in the pathogenesis of the disease. Paediatric cases of kwashiorkor are less prone to severe Plasmodium falciparum malaria than normal children. In mice infected with P. berghei, aflatoxin exposure inhibits parasite growth and ameliorates morbidity. Aflatoxins occur in < or = 40% of samples of breast milk from tropical Africa, usually as low concentrations of the relatively non-toxic derivatives of aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) but sometimes as high concentrations of the very toxic AFB1. This could explain kwashiorkor in breast-fed babies. Aflatoxin exposure occurs in > or = 30% of pregnancies in tropical Africa and the toxins are often in cord blood, sometimes at extremely high concentrations. Aflatoxins are now incriminated in neonatal jaundice and there is circumstantial evidence that they cause perinatal death and reduced birthweight. Aflatoxin-induced immunosuppresion may explain the aggressive behaviour of HIV infection in Africa. There are similarities between observations on HIV cases in Africa and those on heroin addicts in Europe, where 'street' heroin is frequently contaminated with aflatoxin. Aflatoxins were found in 20% of random urine samples from heroin addicts in the U.K. and the Netherlands. Aflatoxins have also been incriminated in episodes of food poisoning which have been associated with serious morbidity and mortality, particularly among young children. SN - 0003-4983 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/9625935/full_citation L2 - http://www.diseaseinfosearch.org/result/4415 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -