Ingestion of the mycotoxin Aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) by protein-undernourished Fischer F344 rats for twelve weeks resulted in significant (p<0.05) increases in the proliferation of liver cells, reduced body weight and increased microsomal Ca2+-ATPase activity. Cyt. P450 content, γ -Glutamyl Transferase (GGT) and Glutathione Transferase (GST) activities were unaffected. The ingestion of AFB1 by normal rats had no effect on all the parameters investigated. It appears that the microsomal Ca2+-pumping ATPase of Protein-Undernourished (PU) Fischer F344 rats is more sensitive to the mycotoxin AFB1 than its counterpart in well-nourished rats. The use of PU rat as animal model for studies on AFB1 toxicity, particularly the effect of AFB1 on the regulation of intracellular calcium ion concentration ([Ca2+]i), is suggested.

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