Author(s): Janaki B, Sashidhar RB
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Abstract Although gum kondagogu (Cochlospermum gossypium) is grouped under gum karaya (Sterculia sp.), it differs significantly in terms of physicochemical properties and chemical composition and does not conform to the confirmatory tests prescribed for gum karaya ([Janaki]). Gum karaya has wide applications in the pharmaceutical and food industries, whereas the use of gum kondagogu is yet to be explored. In this context, a short-term toxicity study on gum kondagogu was undertaken in rats. The gum was fed to rats at 0, 0.2\%, 1\% and 5\% (w/w) in feed, for 90 days. Biochemical parameters were measured to assess the toxicity at the end of the study period. The results indicated no significant changes in growth pattern, haematological indices (RBC, WBC, Hb, PCV, MCV, MCH, MCHC, differential leucocyte counts), biochemical analytes (glucose, urea nitrogen, total protein, albumin, bilirubin, creatinine, sodium and potassium ions), activities of plasma and liver enzymes (alkaline phosphatase, alanine amino-transaminase, aspartate aminotransaminase, lactate dehydrogenase, glutathione S-transferase and gamma-glutamyl transpeptidases and organ to body mass ratio (brain, heart, lungs, liver, kidneys and spleen). Histopathology of the liver and kidney also did not reveal any abnormality. An increased faecal bulk was observed in rats fed with 5\% gum kondagogu. However, faecal moisture content of female rats only was significantly different (P=<0.05) as compared to controls. Thus, it can be inferred, based on the present investigations, that gum kondagogu has a potential application as a food additive, similar to gum karaya. Feeding it at a much higher level (5\%) than expected for consumption as a food additive also did not result in any toxic effect. Being non-toxic, gum kondagogu has a potential as a food additive with excellent physicochemical properties and a unique chemical composition.
This article was published in Food Chem Toxicol
and referenced in Biology and Medicine