Toxicity Potential of Cyanogenic Glycosides in Edible Plants [chapter]

Kumbukani K. Nyirenda
2020 Toxicity in Food [Working Title]  
Cyanogenic glycosides are natural phytotoxins produced by over 2000 plant species, many of which are consumed by humans. The important food crops that contain cyanogenic glycosides include cassava (Manihot esculenta), sorghum (Sorghum bicolor), cocoyam (Colocasia esculenta L. and Xanthosoma sagittifolium L.), bamboo (Bambusa vulgaris), apple (Malus domestica), and apricot (Prunus armeniaca). Cyanogenic glycosides and their derivatives have amino acid-derived aglycones, which spontaneously
more » ... e to release highly toxic hydrogen cyanide (HCN). Dietary cyanide exposure has been associated with several health challenges such as acute cyanide poisoning, growth retardation, and neurological disorders. This chapter will introduce general cyanogenesis principles, highlight major food plants with lethal cyanide levels, and provide epidemiological-based health conditions linked to cyanide intake. Furthermore, strategies for elimination of cyanogens from food crops, such as processing technologies, will be discussed. Finally, the chapter will analyze the role of cyanogenic plants in ensuring food security among resource-poor communities.
doi:10.5772/intechopen.91408 fatcat:ayh2e7p26fdjrbkdquwnp7u5ou