Document Detail

Risk assessment of carcinogens in food.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  19909764     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Approaches for the risk assessment of carcinogens in food have evolved as scientific knowledge has advanced. Early methods allowed little more than hazard identification and an indication of carcinogenic potency. Evaluation of the modes of action of carcinogens and their broad division into genotoxic and epigenetic (non-genotoxic, non-DNA reactive) carcinogens have played an increasing role in determining the approach followed and provide possibilities for more detailed risk characterisation, including provision of quantitative estimates of risk. Reliance on experimental animal data for the majority of risk assessments and the fact that human exposures to dietary carcinogens are often orders of magnitude below doses used in experimental studies has provided a fertile ground for discussion and diverging views on the most appropriate way to offer risk assessment advice. Approaches used by national and international bodies differ, with some offering numerical estimates of potential risks to human health, while others express considerable reservations about the validity of quantitative approaches requiring extrapolation of dose-response data below the observed range and instead offer qualitative advice. Recognising that qualitative advice alone does not provide risk managers with information on which to prioritise the need for risk management actions, a "margin of exposure" approach for substances that are both genotoxic and carcinogenic has been developed, which is now being used by the World Health Organization and the European Food Safety Authority. This review describes the evolution of risk assessment advice on carcinogens and discusses examples of ways in which carcinogens in food have been assessed in Europe.
Susan Barlow; Josef Schlatter
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Review     Date:  2009-11-10
Journal Detail:
Title:  Toxicology and applied pharmacology     Volume:  243     ISSN:  1096-0333     ISO Abbreviation:  Toxicol. Appl. Pharmacol.     Publication Date:  2010 Mar 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2010-02-22     Completed Date:  2010-03-15     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0416575     Medline TA:  Toxicol Appl Pharmacol     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  180-90     Citation Subset:  IM    
Scientific Committee member, European Food Safety Authority, Largo N.Palli 5/A, I-43100 Parma, Italy. <>
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MeSH Terms
Carcinogens / analysis,  toxicity*
Flavoring Agents / adverse effects,  toxicity
Food / adverse effects*
Food Additives / adverse effects,  toxicity
Food Analysis
Food Contamination / analysis*
Legislation, Food
Risk Assessment / methods*
United States
United States Food and Drug Administration
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Carcinogens; 0/Flavoring Agents; 0/Food Additives

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