This research points to a possible link between the pet food contamination that occurred in North America in 2007 and the recent adulteration of milk protein and resultant intoxication of thousands of babies from Asia.
The research described in the paper identifies the principal contaminants as melamine and cyanuric acid. Neither of these compounds is very toxic when administered alone; however, when given in combination, the two compounds form a virtually insoluble complex. This complex forms in the tubules of the kidney, blocking urine flow and causing renal failure.
The research in the paper was done in rats, but because the toxicity depends only on the two compounds being present in the kidney at the same time, is relevant to other species, including humans. The research presented in the paper also shows that the melamine-cyanuric acid complex is soluble in acid, suggesting that acidification of the urine in the distal tubules of the kidney may be a reasonable treatment option.
 Identification and Characterization of Toxicity of Contaminants in Pet Food Leading to an Outbreak of Renal Toxicity in Cats and Dogs, 106, no.1 (November 2008): 251-262, Roy L. M. Dobson*, Safa Motlagh*, Mike Quijano*, R. Thomas Cambron*, Timothy R. Baker*, Aletha M. Pullen*, Brian T. Regg*, Adrienne S. Bigalow-Kern*, Thomas Vennard*, Andrew Fix*, Renate Reimschuessel , Gary Overmann*, Yuching Shan* and George P. Daston*
Kirsty Luff | alfa
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The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.
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