Antitoxic Effects

Far from producing deleterious effects, Spirulina has instead showed itself to have antitoxic effects in tests conducted on cells, laboratory animals, and human beings. These properties have been expressed as a protective effect against toxic damage, such as cardiotoxicity, hepatotoxicity, nephrotoxicity, neurotoxicity, eye toxicity, testis toxicity, ovary toxicity, and other effects.

Table 2.5 shows some antitoxic properties reported for Spirulina and phycocy-anin against deleterious effects of metals, pharmaceuticals and radiation. Both these antitoxic properties as well as some pharmacological effects can be attributed to the antioxidant capacity of this alga. For example, the hepatoprotection by phy-cocyanin from CCl4 and R-(+)-pulegone toxicity is attributed to the inhibition of reactions involved in the production of reactive metabolites and possibly to its radical scavenging activity.87 In the same way, Torres-Duran et al.88 explain the potential hep-atoprotective role of Spirulina against fatty liver induced by CCl4 in rats. Moreover, Shastri et al.89 found that Spirulina acts as an antagonist to testis toxicity from lead though its antioxidant activity.

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