Review of grape and wine toxicity research
Stoewsand, Gilbert; Robinson, W.
The first report of a systematic investigation of toxic substances present in wine was by Leuch in 1895 (9), in which free sulfite was administered in 40-50 mg doses in wine to 150 Swiss human volunteers. Ten per cent complained of gastric distress, increased salivation, and diarrhea. (Sulfite is used in the manufacture of wines for its bacteria-cidal and fungicidal effects.) Investigations of toxicity of wines from that time have centered around the development of liver cirrhosis caused by etha-nol consumption, pesticide residues from vineyard sprayings, and histamine formation in certain wines. Histamine development has been associated with bacterial production occurring when unsanitary conditions are present during wine making, and not with the species of grape. White wines, in general, seem to contain less histamine than red wines (11).
New York State Agricultural Experiment Station
grape; wine; toxicity research
New York's Food and Life Sciences Bulletin6