Genetic Toxicity

The primary objective of genetic toxicity testing is to determine the effects of chemical and physical agents on inheritance material (DNA) and the genetic processes of living cells.77 There are nonmammalian and mammalian mutagenicity tests available to determine this kind of effects. Among the latter, the dominant-lethal assay is known to determine genetic changes in mammals. In this test males are treated with the test substance and mated with untreated females. The dominant-lethal mutation will arise in the sperm and can kill the zygote at any time during development. Females are dissected near the end of gestation and the numbers of fetal deaths and various other reproductive abnormalities are recorded.69 This test has become the standard and a large number of compounds have been screened by using it.78

Spirulina genotoxicity has been studied in rats and mice after a short- and long-term use of dosage as well as in bacteria (Table 2.4). Models have been developed that allow for the detection of potential damage induced in germ cells at a specific stage

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