Ochratoxin A-induced serum biochemical alterations in New Zealand white rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus)


Abstract: Our objective was to study the effects of oral ochratoxin A (OT-A) intoxication in rabbits. New Zealand white rabbits of 8 weeks age, weighing 350-400 g, were utilized for the study. Rabbits were allotted randomly to 3 groups. Group 1 (6 animals) served as control. Groups 2 and 3 (12 animals each) were fed diets supplemented with 1000 and 2000 ppb OT-A, respectively, for 8 weeks. Blood samples were collected at weekly intervals from day 0 up to week 8 and sera were separated for biochemical analysis. Serum glucose and chloride levels showed marked progressive decrease whereas a marginal decrease was noticed in total protein and albumin. Serum levels of creatinine, and urea, and activities of aspartate aminotransferase, alanine aminotransferase, and alkaline phosphatase enzymes were increased in OT-A given groups. The effects were dose dependent. Globulins and albumin:globulin ratio was not affected significantly. SDS-PAGE revealed noticeable decrease in 81, 55-66, 48, and 44.5 KDa protein bands. Absence of 52 KDa proteins in the serum of rabbits fed 2000 ppb OT-A diets was noted. In conclusion, the observation of predominant serum biochemical alterations caused by 1000 and 2000 ppb OT-A in time and dose related fashion suggested progressive nephrotoxic and hepatotoxic effects in rabbits.


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