Aristolochic Acids as Persistent Soil Pollutants: Determination of Risk for Human Exposure and Nephropathy from Plant Uptake
Author(s)Dedon, Peter C.
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Exposure to aristolochic acids (AAs) from Aristolochia plants is one of the major global causes of nephropathy, including Balkan endemic nephropathy (BEN); renal failure; and urothelial cancer. The high incidence of BEN on the Balkan Peninsula is assumed to result from consumption of Aristolochia clematitis L. seeds coharvested with crops. Here, we show that AAs are long-lived soil contaminants that enter wheat and maize plants by root uptake with strong pH dependence. Soil and crops from Serbian farms in areas endemic for A. clematitis were found to be extensively contaminated with AAs, with contamination strongly correlated with local incidence of BEN. The persistence of AAs as soil contaminants suggests that weed control for A. clematitis plants is needed to reduce the incidence of BEN and aristolochic acid nephropathy, systematic surveys of soil and crop AA levels would identify high-risk regions, and it is imperative to research soil-remediation methods.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Biological Engineering
Journal of agricultural and food chemistry
American Chemical Society (ACS)
Li, Weiwei et al. “Aristolochic Acids as Persistent Soil Pollutants: Determination of Risk for Human Exposure and Nephropathy from Plant Uptake.” Journal of agricultural and food chemistry 66 (2018): 11468-11476 © 2018 The Author(s)
Author's final manuscript
General Chemistry, General Agricultural and Biological Sciences