Exposure to chronic dietary aflatoxin poisoning is potentially a compromising condition in COVID-19 patients in Africa

Close-up of Aspergillus flavus and A. parasiticus producer of aflatoxins in corn. KOOKLE/Shutterstock

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In a letter to the editor of the African Journal of Food, Agriculture, Nutrition and Development, the authors draw attention to a potential aggravating risk factor in COVID-19 patients in Kenya, one that is amenable to mitigation.

Advanced age, male sex and underlying medical conditions are the main risk factors of fatality among COVID-19 patients. Kenya has reported fatalities in relatively young people with no diagnosed underlying medical conditions.

While no evidence exists on the association between aflatoxicosis and COVID 19, effects of potential risk factors such as aflatoxicosis on pathogenesis and epidemiology of COVID-19 need to be elucidated.

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