Indian research looked at detection of Ochratoxin A in wheat samples in different regions of India.
Ochratoxin A (OTA), a mycotoxin produced by different species of Aspergillus and Penicillium spp of fungi, occurs in cereal grains, spices, coffee beans and various types of cereal products.
OTA toxicity in animals is well documented and is suspected to be a carcinogen for human.
In the present study, fifty wheat samples were collected from northern states of India for investigation of OTA levels using HPLC attached with a fluorescence detector utilizing acetonitrile–water–acetic acid mixture as mobile phase.
The Limit of Quantitation (LOQ) was 0.71 μg/kg, and the average recovery values of OTA ranged from 71 to 92%.
It was observed that 30 (60%) wheat samples were contaminated with detectable quantity of OTA ranging from 1.36-21.17 μg/kg including 13 (26%) samples exceeding the level of 5 μg/kg suggested by European Union.
Based on the consumption of wheat in different states of India, the intake of OTA was found to saturate the provisional tolerable weekly intake (PTWI) to an extent of 0.97–2.49 folds for mean values in adult population.
Overall, the study provides evidence for possible contamination of wheat produce thereby leading to exposure risk in Indian population.
► 50 wheat samples analyzed for OTA showed that 30 samples were contaminated.
► 13 (26%) samples were found to exceed the level of 5 μg kg-1 suggested by EU.
► Intake of OTA was found to saturate PTWI to an extent of 97–249% for mean values.
► The study provides evidence for possible exposure risk to OTA in Indian population.
► Could be one of the unknown etiological factors of chronic kidney disease in India.
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