2010 Volume 35 Issue 4 Pages 485-491
To attempt a risk assessment of the excess intake of trivalent chromium (Cr), tissue Cr accumulation and urinary Cr excretion were examined in weanling rats fed experimental diets containing graded levels of Cr chloride (CrCl3) or Cr picolinate (CrPic). Thirty-six male weanling 4-weeks-old Wistar rats were divided into six groups and fed a casein-based semi-purified diet (Cr content: < 0.02 µg/g) supplemented with 1, 10, or 100 µg Cr/g as CrCl3 or CrPic for 28 days. Among the experimental groups, no significant difference was observed in body weight; however, supplementation of 100 µg Cr/g to the diets caused a significant low liver weight irrespective of the chemical species of Cr. Activities of serum aspartate aminotransferase and alanine aminotransferase were significantly elevated in rats given CrPic at 100 µg Cr/g. In the liver, kidney and femur, Cr accumulation increased with elevation of the dietary Cr level. No influence of the difference in the chemical species of supplemented Cr was observed in the liver and kidney, but CrCl3 caused significantly higher Cr accumulation than CrPic in the femur of rats given 100 µg Cr/g. Daily urinary Cr excretion elevated with the increase of the dietary Cr level. Rats given CrPic showed significantly higher daily urinary Cr excretion than those given CrCl3, particularly at a dietary Cr level of 100 µg/g. The rate of urinary Cr excretion in rats given CrPic was constant, irrespective of the dietary Cr level, but that of rats given CrCl3 fell with the increase of the dietary Cr level. These results indicate that the lowest adverse effect level of dietary Cr is less than 100 µg/g, irrespective of the chemical species of Cr.