Teratogenic Effects of Aspartame Exposure of Chick Embryonic Development

  • Nattharin Kormsing
  • Yadaridee Viravud
  • Jantima Roongruangchai
  • Vasana Plakornkul
  • Thanaporn Rungruang
Keywords: Aspartame, teratogen, chick embryo


Aspartame is an artificial non-saccharide sweetener 200 times sweeter than sucrose and has the no calories which approved for use in food products. Its metabolites can be toxic to many organs but there are only a few studies on the use of aspartame  during pregnancy which it might cause abnormality to the newborn. This study about aspartame acts as the teratogenic agent on the development by using chick embryo as a model. The 120 fertilized white leghorn eggs were randomly divided into 30 eggs of control and 90 eggs of treated groups. The control group was injected with normal saline, the 3 treated groups were injected with 10, 20, 30 mg/100 ml into the yolk sac of 24 hr incubation of 3 days. All the eggs from each group were collected in day 3 of incubation and studied total mount. The results in experimental at the low concentrations of aspartame such as 10 mg/ml and 20 mg/ml showed increasing in mortality rate and growth retardation as increasing concentration of aspartame. There were retardation of brain formation, brain flexure which appear only cephalic flexure, microphthalmia, no branchial arch. However, at high concentrations 30 mg/ml there were anencephaly, anophthalmi, incomplete fusion of otic placode, abnormal heart looping, tail degeneration, and no limb buds and somite retardation. It could be concluded that aspartame has impacted the gross structure malformations and morphological changes on the development. Therefore, should avoid on the consumption of aspartame especially during pregnancy.


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