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Fundam Appl Toxicol. 1985 Dec;5(6 Pt 1):1144-52.

Toxicity of peptides of Amanita virosa mushrooms in mice.


A study was performed on the hepatic reaction of mice to acute intoxication with virotoxins (alaviroidin, viroisin, deoxoviroisin, viroidin, deoxoviroidin) and phalloidin, cyclic peptides isolated from Amanita virosa mushrooms. Purified fractions were administered intraperitoneally at various dosages to determine the LD50 which ranged from 1.0 to 5.3 mg/kg, with viroidin, phalloidin, and viroisin being the most potent. The virotoxins and phalloidin induced hemorrhagic necrosis of the liver. The development of hepatic lesions was followed by enhanced serum alanine aminotransferase (ALT) activity as well as by light and electron microscopic changes. In additional groups, bile ducts were cannulated and bile was collected for 2 hr after injection of the peptides (1 mg/kg) to determine their cholestatic potential. The earliest changes in hepatocytes were plasma membrane invagination and cytoplasmic vacuole formation. At later time periods, erythrocyte accumulation was evident in vacuoles and in the cytoplasm. The severity of hepatic damage, as judged by morphologic analysis, was correlated with serum ALT activity. Two of the peptides tested (viroisin and phalloidin) decreased bile flow by more than 50% over control values. Mild ultrastructural alterations in the bile canalicular pole of hepatocytes were observed during the development of cholestasis. Since virotoxins, like phalloidin, are bound to actin, it is possible that their affinity to cellular actin may be responsible for their hepatotoxicity.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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