Today a team of researchers from the Department of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Production of the Federico II University of Naples, in collaboration with the Sbarro Health Research Organization (SHRO), at Temple University in Philadelphia, and the Department of Biotechnology at the University of Siena, Itay, has discovered the effectiveness of a new extract, of natural origin, able to prevent nephrotoxicity induced by the mycotoxin Ochratoxin A (OTA), and has published this research in the international Journal of Cellular Physiology .
OTA represents a danger and a threat to human health and to various animal species. A well-known mycotoxin, OTA is a secondary metabolite produced by several fungal species, in particular from Aspergillus ochraceus and Penicillium verrucosum .
It is one of the main food contaminants, especially in feed, cereals, coffee, wine, dried fruit, as well as meat products.
Recent studies have also shown its presence in alfalfa, in food colors and even in bottled water. OTA is a somewhat ubiquitous mycotoxin, found in various parts of the world, accumulating in animal feed and food due to favorable climatic conditions in agricultural environments, or due to improper storage of food components.
OTA proves to be nephrotoxic, hepatotoxic, immunodepressant, genotoxic and carcinogenic for humans and for various animal species. In fact, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has classified OTA as a possible carcinogen for humans (group 2B).
"OTA represents a worldwide problem, related to zoonosis for humans and animals," says Prof. Roberto Ciarcia, MV, associate professor at the section of Veterinary Pharmacology and Toxicology of the Department of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Production of the University of Naples Federico II, adding "this research carried out on an extract obtained from blood oranges and lemons rich in cyanidin 3-glucoside and other polyphenols opens new perspectives to limit kidney damage induced by OTA.
The kidney is the target organ of OTA that induces a morphological alteration both at the glomerular and tubular level as well as interstitial fibrosis." Dr. Sara Damiano, first author of the study Related Stories
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