The hepatoprotective effect of sea buckthorn (Hippophae rhamnoides) berries on induced aflatoxin B1 poisoning in chickens 1

Poult Sci. 2013 Apr;92(4):966-74. doi: 10.3382/ps.2012-02572.


The leaves and berries of sea buckthorn (SB; Hippophae rhamnoides; family Elaeagnaceae) are medically claimed as having phytoantioxidant, antiinflammatory, and anticancerous properties in humans. This study evaluated the hepatoprotective activity of oil from SB berries against toxicity induced by aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) in broiler chickens. The toxicity of AFB1 led to lower total serum proteins and specifically reduced albumin (P < 0.001). Serum aspartate aminotransferase increased from 191.14 ± 11.56 to 218.80 ± 13.68 (P < 0.001). When chickens were simultaneously dosed with AFB1 and an extract of SB berries, subsequent histology of the liver showed a significant reduction of necrosis and fatty formation compared with chickens treated with AFB1 alone. Immunohistochemical results indicated that COX2, Bcl-2, and p53 were highly expressed in the liver of AFB1-treated chickens and their expression was significantly reduced by SB oil supplementation. The levels of AFB1 residues in chickens livers were significantly reduced by SB oil from 460.92 ± 6.2 ng/mL in the AFB1 group to 15.59 ± 6.1 ng/mL in the AFB1 and SB oil group. These findings suggest that SB oil has a potent hepatoprotective activity, reducing the concentration of aflatoxins in liver and diminishing their adverse effects.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aflatoxin B1 / antagonists & inhibitors*
  • Aflatoxin B1 / pharmacokinetics
  • Animal Feed / microbiology
  • Animals
  • Chickens*
  • Dietary Supplements / analysis
  • Female
  • Food Contamination / analysis
  • Fruit / chemistry
  • Hippophae / chemistry*
  • Liver / pathology
  • Liver / ultrastructure
  • Liver Diseases / pathology
  • Liver Diseases / prevention & control
  • Liver Diseases / veterinary*
  • Male
  • Microscopy, Electron, Transmission / veterinary
  • Plant Oils / therapeutic use*
  • Poultry Diseases / pathology
  • Poultry Diseases / prevention & control*


  • Plant Oils
  • Aflatoxin B1