Argan oil is receiving increasing attention due to its potential health benefits in the prevention of cardiovascular and cancer risk, but no information to date is available about its genotoxic or antigenotoxic effect. The genotoxicity and the antigenotoxicity of commercial argan oil and its unsaponifiable fraction (UF) against Drosophila melanogaster was evaluated using wing spots enumeration. Results showed that the argan oil (at 20% dosage) and the UF (at 0.112 g/l) were not genotoxic. Results on the effects of argan oil and UF on the mutagenic properties of methyl methanesulfonate (MMS) and ethyl carbamate (urethane) showed an inhibition rate of 54 and 43% against MMS and urethane, respectively, by argan oil and 56 and 75% against urethane and MMS, respectively, by UF. The result of the present study suggests that argan oil prevent mutations induced by urethane and MMS inD. melanogaster, as a consequence consumption of argan oil can prevent human DNA lesion induced by some environmental mutagens.
Key words: Virgin argan oil, unsaponifiable fraction, Argania spinosa, Drosophila melanogaster, genotoxicity, antigenotoxicity.
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