Control of konzo by detoxification of cassava flour in three villages in the Democratic Republic of Congo

J. P. Banea, J. Howard Bradbury, C. Mandombi, D. Nahimana, Ian C. Denton, N. Kuwa, Daniel Tshala-Katumbay

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Three villages in Boko Health Zone, Bandundu Province, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), had 61 konzo cases and konzo prevalences of 2.5%, 4.1% and 7.5% respectively. Konzo cases occurred every year for 10. years and every month, peaking in July. The high mean cyanide content of cassava flour of 50. ppm was due to short soaking of cassava roots for 1-2. days instead of 3-4. days. Konzo cases were examined and village women taught the wetting method that removes cyanogens from flour. The villages were visited every month for 1. year following previous methodology. No new konzo cases occurred during the intervention, mean flour cyanide levels reduced from 50 to 14 ppm and mean urinary thiocyanate levels of school children reduced from 930 to 150. μmole/L. The percentage of children with urinary thiocyanate levels of >350. μmole/L was reduced from a maximum of 80 in Ikialala before the intervention to 0 in Ikusama, Ikialala and 3 in Imboso Mwanga 1. year later. This is the second time that konzo has been controlled and success depends on regular use of the wetting method by village women. The methodology is now being used in other villages in DRC with financial support of AusAID.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)506-513
Number of pages8
JournalFood and Chemical Toxicology
Volume60
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2013
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Democratic Republic of the Congo
Manihot
Detoxification
Cyanides
Flour
Wetting
villages
thiocyanates
Financial Support
cyanides
Health
flour
cyanogen
school children
methodology
soaking
cassava
funding
cassava flour
thiocyanate

Keywords

  • Cassava flour
  • Cyanogen removal
  • Democratic republic of Congo
  • Konzo control
  • Three villages
  • Wetting method

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Toxicology

Cite this

Control of konzo by detoxification of cassava flour in three villages in the Democratic Republic of Congo. / Banea, J. P.; Bradbury, J. Howard; Mandombi, C.; Nahimana, D.; Denton, Ian C.; Kuwa, N.; Tshala-Katumbay, Daniel.

In: Food and Chemical Toxicology, Vol. 60, 10.2013, p. 506-513.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Banea, J. P. ; Bradbury, J. Howard ; Mandombi, C. ; Nahimana, D. ; Denton, Ian C. ; Kuwa, N. ; Tshala-Katumbay, Daniel. / Control of konzo by detoxification of cassava flour in three villages in the Democratic Republic of Congo. In: Food and Chemical Toxicology. 2013 ; Vol. 60. pp. 506-513.
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