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Risk Assessment of Hepatocellular Carcinoma with Aflatoxin B1 Exposure in Edible Oils

Published: 11 August 2022
 by  MDPI
 in Toxins

Abstract: Contamination of edible oils with aflatoxins (AFs) is a universal issue due to the detrimental effects of aflatoxins on human health and the fact that edible oils are a major source of fungal growth, particularly storage fungi (Aspergillus sp.). The objective of this study was to assess aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) in edible oil used in fried food in order to determine the risk of cancer from AFB1 exposure through cooked food using the FAO/WHO’s and EFSA’s margin of exposure (MOE) quantitative liver cancer risk approaches. Using Mycosep 226 columns and HPLC-FLD, 100 samples of cooking oils (soybean, canola, and sunflower oil) from different food points were analyzed for contamination with aflatoxins. Of all the samples tested, 89% were positive for total aflatoxins and AFB1, with 65% indicating AF concentrations beyond permitted levels. Canola oil was found to contain higher levels of AFB1 and AFs than soybean and sunflower oil. Almost 71 percent of canola oil samples (range of 54.4–281.1 µg/kg) were contaminated with AF levels higher than the proposed limits of the European Union (20 µg/kg). The consumption of canola oil samples used in fried foods had MOE values that were significantly lower as compared to sunflower and soybean oils, indicating that risk reduction is feasible. Additionally, compared to soybean and sunflower oil, canola oil exhibited a greater threat of liver cancer cases linked to AFB1 exposure (17.13 per 100,000 males over 35 and 10.93 per 100,000 females over 35). Using a quantitative liver cancer approach, health risk valuation demonstrated that males and females over the age of 35 are at significant risk of developing liver cancer. The health risk assessment exposed that the males and female over the age of 35 are at considerable risk of liver cancer by using a quantitative liver cancer approach. The innovation of this study lies in the fact that no such study is reported related to liver cancer risk evaluation accompanied with AFB1 exposure from consumed edible oil. As a result, a national strategy must be developed to solve this problem so that edible oil products are subjected to severe regulatory examination.
Keywords: AFB1 / AFs / HPLC / dietary intake / MOE / quantitative liver cancer / risk assessment / Faisalabad

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