Aflatoxins: An Innocent Cause of Lethality in Humans
According to Food and Agriculture Organization, United Nations, approximately one-fourth of the world’s food crops are continuously being contaminated comprehensively by mycotoxins. More than 300 types of mycotoxins are produced by one-fourth of the cereal crops infected. The foodstuffs containing aflatoxins are indiscriminately being consumed by people developing various ailments, diseases and even cancer innocently. Aflatoxins (Afs) have been the most widely studied mycotoxin worldwide. The disease caused by the ingestion of aflatoxins is collectively called aflatoxicosis. They are mostly found in peanuts, mouldy maize grains, rice and perishable dairy products. There are four major types of aflatoxins (AFB1, AFB2, AFG1 and AFG2) found in nature mainly produced by the Aspergillus flavus, A. parasiticus and A. nomius. Aflatoxin B1 has always been a potent carcinogen classified by the WHO in Group “A” as causing cancer in humans. It induces mutation in the p53 gene to develop hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in humans. This is the third leading cause of cancer deaths worldwide. Keeping view in mind the present paper is an attempt to review the research done so far in the field of aflatoxins in humans. The review focuses on occurrence, epidemiology, historical glimpses, chemical nature and the types of aflatoxins, detection and detoxification, diagnosis, clinical symptoms and the treatment of aflatoxicosis in humans.
Keywords: Aflatoxins, Occurrence, Detection, Detoxification, Aflatoxicosis, AFB1,AFB2, AFG1 , AFG2, Hepatocellular Carcinoma
International Journal of Clinical and Biomedical Research; Volume 9, Issue 4; 2023; 1-9
Copyright (c) 2023 Mohammad Salim, Shafikun Nisha, Mohammad Shahid Masroor, Shagufta Parween