Indan Journal of Medical Research Indan Journal of Medical Research Indan Journal of Medical Research Indan Journal of Medical Research
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Year : 2014  |  Volume : 140  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 96-101

Grass pea consumption & present scenario of neurolathyrism in Maharashtra State of India

1 Food & Drug Toxicology Centre (ICMR), Hyderabad, India
2 Department of Clinical Studies, National Institute of Nutrition (ICMR), Hyderabad, India

Correspondence Address:
Arjun L Khandare
Scientist E, FDTRC, National Institute of Nutrition (ICMR) PO Jama-I-Osmania, Hyderabad 500 007
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

PMID: 25222783

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Background & objectives: Neurolathyrism is a non progressive motor neuron disorder engendered by the prolonged over-consumption of Lathyrus sativus (grass pea) seeds which contain a neurotoxic amino acid, β-N oxalyl- L-α, β-diaminopropionic acid (β-ODAP). It is characterized by spastic paraparesis in the hind limbs. The present study was conducted in 105 households (HHs) of Gondia district in Maharashtra, India, where grass pea is cultivated and consumed to assess the health implication of its consumption. Methods: Across-sectional survey was carried out in 105 HHS in five villages and grass pea samples were collected for β-ODAP estimation. Amino acid analysis was also done, neurolathyrism cases were identified by snowball sampling method and neurological examination was carried out. Results: The study revealed that 61 per cent of population was consuming this pulse as a part of diet. β-ODAP concentration in grass pea was high in Bora village (1254.5 ± 528.21 mg %) and less in Malgaon village (413.6±415.79 mg %). The nutritional status of the people was within the normal range (BMI 18± 3.40 kg/m [2] in the surveyed households. Consumption of grass pea was observed to be less than 25g. Conclusions: The cases of neurolathyrism declined in all the studied villages due to reduced β-ODAP exposure through Lathyrus sativus consumption, however, the grass pea was cultivated and consumed in Gondia district of Maharashtra State.

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