Top Health Tools
Top Health Tools

Top Reports
Top Reports
 
Top Articles
Top Articles

Top Reviews
Top Reviews
   
Ingredient in Chewing Gum Causes Cancer


A substance used to make chewing gum could soon be declared toxic by the federal government after an international agency found that it might cause cancer in lab rats.

A substance used to make chewing gum could soon be declared toxic by the federal government after an international agency found that it might cause cancer in lab rats.

On May 17, the government will publish a list of 17 substances that may be labeled as toxic in a draft report on risk assessment. Acetic acid ethenyl ester, or vinyl acetate -- commonly used as a base in some chewing gums -- could be on that list, Health Canada said Monday.

The substance is a colourless liquid with a strong, sweet scent that can be used as a flavouring agent. When made into a polymer, it becomes useful in the production of chewing gum.

However, tests completed by the International Agency for Research on Cancer found evidence that vinyl acetate could be linked to instances of cancer in rats. No similar results have been found in humans.

For this reason, the substance is classified as a "potentially high hazard substance" by Health Canada.

"The problem with cancer-causing things is we don't always know that there is a safe dose. Certainly, less is better," says Dr. Kapil Khatter, an adviser with Enivironmental Defence. His organization will likely push for the government to encourage alternatives, which Khatter says are available.

The federal government is conducting the study on vinyl acetate as part of a larger review of 200 substances called the Chemicals Management Plan to determine what actions, if any, are necessary to protect human health. Vinyl acetate is classified as a "potentially high hazard substance" because of the findings related to its carcinogenic nature.

Following the publication of the report, the public will have 60 days to comment before a final report is issued, at which point Ottawa is required to implement control measures. This could include further study.

Last month, retailers across Canada voluntarily pulled baby bottles containing bisphenol A off the shelves when that substance was part of a similar assessment.

Vinyl acetate is also used in the production of perfumes, deodorizers and paints and sealants, among other things.



Reference Sources: canada.com

February 15, 2010
Share/Bookmark
...............................................................................................................

This site is owned and operated by PreventDisease.com 1999-2014. All Rights Reserved. All content on this site may be copied, without permission, whether reproduced digitally or in print, provided copyright, reference and source information are intact and use is strictly for not-for-profit purposes. Please review our copyright policy for full details.
aaa
Interact
volunteerDonateWrite For Us
Stay Connected With Our Newsletter