Pathology of ochratoxin A-induced nephrotoxicity in Japanese quail and its protection by sea buckthorn (Hippophae rhamnoides L.)

Avian Dis. 2013 Dec;57(4):767-79. doi: 10.1637/10549-040913-Reg.1.


The present study was designed to study the protective effect of sea buckthorn (SBT) against renal damage induced by ochratoxin A (OTA) in Japanese quail. Day-old quail chicks were divided into six groups and fed a basal quail chick mash containing 2% SBT leaf powder (group SX), OTA at a dietary level of 3 ppm (group OX), 25 ppm L-beta-phenylalanine (Phe) plus 3 ppm OTA (group OP), 2% dietary level of SBT leaf powder plus 3 ppm OTA (group OS), SBT leaf extract at a level of 10%/L of drinking water plus 3 ppm OTA (group OSS), and a standard toxin-free feed (group CX, control) for 21 days. OTA at 3 ppm level in diet grossly revealed mild to moderate renal swelling in OX birds, and the severity was less in the case of OS, OSS, and OP birds. Microscopically, degenerative, necrotic, and inflammatory changes were observed in OX birds, but the changes were less severe in OS, OSS, and OP birds. Ultrastructural studies revealed remarkable and consistent changes in the proximal convoluted tubules (PCTs), with severe damage of mitochondria and endoplasmic reticulum in OX birds, whereas SBT-treated birds (groups OS, OSS) had mild changes in mitochondria. A moderate to marked increase in number of peroxisomes in the cytoplasm of PCTs was a consistent finding in the Phe- and SBT-treated groups kept on OTA in comparison to the group fed OTA alone. In conclusion, the inclusion of 2% SBT leaf powder in feed and SBT leaf extract in water provided partial protection against OTA-induced nephropathy in Japanese quail.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Animal Feed / analysis
  • Animals
  • Coturnix / metabolism*
  • Diet / veterinary
  • Hippophae / chemistry*
  • Kidney / drug effects*
  • Kidney / pathology
  • Kidney / ultrastructure
  • Microscopy, Electron, Transmission / veterinary
  • Mycotoxins / toxicity*
  • Ochratoxins / toxicity*
  • Plant Extracts / administration & dosage
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Plant Leaves / chemistry


  • Mycotoxins
  • Ochratoxins
  • Plant Extracts
  • ochratoxin A