Cancer incidences and mortality in Kenya are increasing according to recent reports and now number among the top five causes of mortality in the country. The risk factors responsible for this increase in cancer incidences are assumed to be genetic and/or environmental in nature. The environmental factors include exposure to carcinogenic contaminants such aflatoxins (AFs). However, the exact causes of the increase in cancer incidences and prevalence in many developing countries are not fully known. Aflatoxins are known contaminants produced by the common fungi Aspergillus flavus and the closely related Aspergillus parasiticus which grow as moulds in human foods. Aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) is most common in food and is 1000 times more potent when compared with benzo(a)pyrene, the most potent carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH). Aflatoxins have therefore drawn a lot of interest in research from food safety and human health point of view. In this chapter, the chemistry, synthesis, identification, toxicology and potential human health risks of AFB1 in Kenya are discussed.
Part of the book: Aflatoxin B1 Occurrence, Detection and Toxicological Effects
Pesticide use in Kenya plays a critical role in socio-economic development because its economy depends heavily on agriculture, which contributes to 30% of the GDP and accounts for 60% of export earnings. For agriculture and public health vector control, the country relies on pesticides, most of which (95%) are formulated products imported from China, India and Germany as the top exporters. In this chapter, we present the chemistry, manufacturing, importation and regulatory processes regarding pesticides in Kenya as well as their usage and impacts. All the various categories, organochlorine, organophosphate, carbamate, pyrethroid, neonicotinod insectides, as well as fungicides, herbicides and biopesticides, which are used in the country, are considered. A total of 1,447 and 157, which include formulations and active ingredients, respectively, for use in agriculture and public health sectors, with sufficient information on their usages and toxicities, are listed on the Pest Control Products Board (PCPB) database that is available to the public. A significant number of studies have been conducted in major agricultural regions, which have characterized pesticides, their toxicities, the types of crops and pests, the usage and human and environmental health risk indices, since the 2000, but the reports have not made any impacts on pesticide regulation, as some of the very toxic active ingredients, belonging to the WHO Class I and II, are still reported by farmers. However, a recent call from NGO’s made an impact in government and parliament, and a bill was introduced in 2020 with the aim of banning some of the toxic ones that have already been withdrawn from the EU market.
Part of the book: Pesticides