TTX and its analogues are chemicals produced by marine bacteria, and have been detected in edible bivalves and gastropods (such as sea snails, clams and oysters) in Europe. Due to the pronounced toxicity observed in humans and other mammals following acute oral exposure to TTX, and the likely similar potency of TTX analogues, EFSA concluded that a group acute reference dose (ARfD) should be set at 0.25 μg/kg bw, based on the critical effect of apathy in acute oral studies in mice. Based upon this group ARfD, consumption of a large portion (400 g) of shellfish (but excluding oysters, which contained particularly high levels of TTX equivalents) is not expected to result in adverse effects in humans. No data were available to consider the longer term effects of TTX (or its analogues), or to set a tolerable daily intake (TDI).

European Food Safety Authority (2017). EFSA Panel on Contaminants in the Food Chain (CONTAM). Risks for public health related to the presence of tetrodotoxin (TTX) and TTX analogues in marine bivalves and gastropods.


The above items were taken from the June 2017 issue of Toxicology and Regulatory News which is sent automatically to members of bibra.

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