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ARS Home » Plains Area » College Station, Texas » Southern Plains Agricultural Research Center » Food and Feed Safety Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #386977

Research Project: Ecological Factors that Enable Colonization, Retention, and Dispersal of Foodborne Pathogens and Intervention Strategies to Control the Pathogens and Antimicrobial Resistance in Cattle and Swine

Location: Food and Feed Safety Research

Title: Aflatoxin B1 sorption and safety of dietary sodium bentonite in sprague-dawley rats

item MARROQUIN-CARDONA, ALICIA - Universidad Autonoma De Nuevo Leon
item DENG, YOUJUN - Texas A&M University
item GARCIA-MAZCORRO, JOSE - Mna From Mexico
item JOHNSON, NATALIE - Texas A&M University
item MITCHELL, NICOLLE - Texas A&M University
item TANG, LILI - University Of Georgia
item WANG, JIA-SHENG - University Of Georgia
item Harvey, Roger
item PHILLIPS, TIMOTHY - Texas A&M University

Submitted to: Clays and Clay Minerals
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/10/2022
Publication Date: 2/22/2022
Citation: Marroquin-Cardona, A.G., Deng, Y., Garcia-Mazcorro, J.F., Johnson, N.M., Mitchell, N.J., Tang, L., Wang, J., Harvey, R.B., Phillips, T.D. 2022. Aflatoxin B1 sorption and safety of dietary sodium bentonite in sprague-dawley rats. Clays and Clay Minerals. 70(2):165-181.

Interpretive Summary: Aflatoxins (AF) are toxins produced by fungal species that if ingested in feed or food, can cause liver disease, growth reduction, and death in animals and can cause cancer in humans. Because of this toxicity, research efforts for years have focused on ways to reduce the dangers of AF. Bentonites are clay compounds that have been shown to counteract the toxicity of AF in animals and humans. However, there is little information about any ill effects of bentonite if consumed over time. This three month study in rats showed that bentonite did not inhibit or change growth, blood values, or cause pathology in body tissues. By showing that bentonite is essentially harmless, it will be able to be used in AF-contaminated animal feeds to counteract the deleterious effects of AF. This research is important because it could open the door for agricultural producers to utilize feedstuffs that would otherwise be thrown away, potentially translating into millions of dollars saved in the feed and animal production industries.

Technical Abstract: Bentonites are readily available clays used in the livestock industry as feed additives to reduce aflatoxin (AF) exposure, however, their potential interaction with nutrients is the main concern limiting their use. Therefore, a 3-month study using juvenile Sprague Dawley (SD) rats was designed to investigate the safety of a dietary Na-bentonite with the potential to be used as an AF adsorbent. Animals were fed a control diet or diet with Na-bentonite at 0.25% and 2% (w/w) inclusion rate. Growth, serum, and blood biochemical parameters, including selected serum vitamins (A and E) and elements such as calcium (Ca), potassium (K), iron (Fe), and zinc (Zn) were measured. The mineral characteristics and the aflatoxin B1 sorption capacity of Na-bentonite were also determined. Some significant differences between the control group and bentonite treatments were observed in serum biochemistry, vitamin, and minerals measurements; however, parameters fell within reference clinical values reported for SD rats and no evidence of dose-dependency was found. Serum Na and Na/K ratios were increased, while K levels were decreased in males and females from Na-bentonite groups. Serum Zn levels were decreased only in males from Na-bentonite treatments. Overall, results show that inclusion of Na-bentonite at 0.25% and 2% did not cause any observable toxicity in a 3-month rodent study.