Integrative Toxicopathological Evaluation of Aflatoxin B1 Exposure in F344 Rats Academic Article uri icon


  • In this study, male F344 rats were orally exposed to a single dose of aflatoxin B₁ (AFB₁) at 0, 50, 250, or 1,000 µg/kg body weight (BW) or repeated dose of 0, 5, 10, 25, or 75 µg/kg BW for up to 5 weeks. Biochemical and histological changes were assessed together with the formation of AFB1-lysine adduct (AFB-Lys) and liver foci positive for placental form glutathione S transferase (GST-P⁺). In single-dose protocol, serum aspartate transaminase (AST), alanine transaminase (ALT), and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) showed dose-related elevation, with maximal changes observed (>100-fold) at day 3 after treatment. Animals that received 250 µg/kg AFB₁ showed concurrent bile duct proliferation, necrosis, and GST-P⁺ hepatocytes at 3 day, followed by liver GST-P⁺ foci appearance at 1 week. In repeated-dose protocol, bile duct proliferation and liver GST-P⁺ foci co-occurred after 3-week exposure to 75 µg/kg AFB₁, followed by proliferation foci formation after 4 week and dramatic ALT, AST, and CK elevations after 5 weeks. Liver GST-P⁺ foci were induced temporally and in a dose-related manner. Serum AFB-Lys increased temporally at low doses (5-25 µg/kg), and reached the maximum after 2-week exposure at 75 µg/kg. This integrative study demonstrated that liver GST-P⁺ cells and foci are sensitive biomarkers for AFB₁ toxic effect and correlated with bile duct proliferation and biochemical alterations in F344 rats.

author list (cited authors)

  • Qian, G., Wang, F., Tang, L., Massey, M. E., Mitchell, N. J., Su, J., ... Wang, J.

citation count

  • 24

complete list of authors

  • Qian, Guoqing||Wang, Franklin||Tang, Lili||Massey, Michael E||Mitchell, Nicole J||Su, Jianjia||Williams, Jonathan H||Phillips, Timothy D||Wang, Jia-Sheng

publication date

  • February 2013