Effects of green tea catechin on embryo/fetal development in rats
Author: Osamu Morita and John F. Knapp and Yasushi Tamaki and Donald G. Stump and John S. Moore and Mark D. Nemec
Evidence suggests that the health benefits associated with green tea consumption are related to tea catechins. The objective of this study was to evaluate potential maternal and fetal effects of standardized heat-sterilized green tea catechins (GTC-H). GTC-H was gavage administered to mated female rats from gestation day 6 through 17, at doses of 0, 200, 600, and 2000 mg/kg/day. There were no GTC-H-related deaths or macroscopic findings. During the entire gestation period in the high-dose (2000 mg/kg/day)-treated group and during days 6–9 and 6–18 in the 600 mg/kg/day group, mean body weight gain was lower. Mean feed consumption was lower during gestation days 6–9 in the 600 mg/kg/day group and during gestation days 6–9 and 9–12 in the 2000 mg/kg/day group. Compared to the control group, mean body weights in the 600 and 2000 mg/kg/day groups were up to 5.1% and 7.7% lower during gestation days 9–20. GTC-H administration did not affect mean gravid uterine weights or intrauterine growth and survival. There were no GTC-H-related fetal malformations or developmental variations. Based on the results of this study, the no-observed-adverse-effect level (NOAEL) for GTC-H was 200 mg/kg/day for maternal toxicity, and 2000 mg/kg/day for embryo/fetal development.