Volume 14 (2008) Issue 4 Pages 351
In this study, we examined the effects of Spirulina platensis, a multicellular filamentous blue-green algae currently used world-wide as a food supplement, upon acute and subchronic treatments to rodents. For short-term treatment, no signs of toxicity were observed within 7 days after feeding male Swiss mice at the high dose of 30 and 10 g/kg body weight of fresh and dried S. platensis, respectively. For the subchronic toxicity study, two separate experiments were also performed to evaluate both forms of S. platensis. In each experiment, four groups of six Sprague-Dawley male and female rats were given fresh or dried alga at various doses by feeding daily for 12 weeks. In all instances, the consumption of algae showed no effect on behavior, food and water intake, growth or health status of these animals during the course of this investigation. The values in clinical chemistry monitored throughout the study period did not reveal significant differences between the control and treated groups. In addition, post-mortem examination found no abnormalities in the gross findings. Our results thus demonstrate for the first time that short-term and long-term consumptions of S. platensis, up to high feeding levels, did not produce any adverse effects in experimental animals.