Pellagra in sorghum eaters

Gopalan, C (1972) Pellagra in sorghum eaters. In: Proceedings of the First Asian Congress of Nutrition, 22 January - 2 February, 1971, National Institute of Nutrition, Hyderabad.

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Pellagra is common among farm workers around Hyderabad and for over 65% of those with pellagra the staple was Sorghum vulgare and for 25%, maize and sorghum. From published work, pellagra could not be explained by a low content of tryptophan or of available niacin in sorghum, but sorghum and maize both have a high leucine content. Normal persons and others with pellagra were given a standard diet with 10 g leucine daily for 7 or 8 days then the leucine was withdrawn. Leucine significantly increased excretion of quinolinic acid and decreased that of N-methylnicotinamide 6-pyridone, especially with a tryptophan load, but did not affect excretion of tryptophan metabolites in urine. It caused mental condition and electroencephalogram to deteriorate. Results were similar in rats.Niacin deficiency appeared in dogs given a diet with 65% sorghum, or a diet with adequate niacin but extra leucine, or in monkeys given sorghum. It appeared in dogs given the high-leucine maize Deccan Hybrid but not in others given the low-leucine opaque-2 except when leucine was added. Excess leucine may be concerned in pellagra and if so that would be the first disorder in man found to be caused by amino acid imbalance. Selection of low-leucine strains of maize and sorghum would be of importance in some parts of the world

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Author Affiliation: National Institute of Nutrition, Hyderabad-7, India
Subjects: Postharvest Management > Food Technology
Divisions: Sorghum
Depositing User: Ms K Syamalamba
Date Deposited: 22 Aug 2012 08:04
Last Modified: 22 Aug 2012 08:06

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