Heterocyclic amines: human carcinogens in cooked food?Nutr Metab Cardiovasc Dis. 2001 Aug; 11(4 Suppl):82-6.NM
During the frying of meat and fish, genotoxic heterocyclic amines (HCAs) are formed. The dietary exposure to HCAs may be implicated in the aetiology of human cancer, but there may be other factors in our diet that prevent the genotoxic effects of these compounds. Within the project described here, we plan to identify regional and individual cooking habits that affect HCA-levels in our food. These are determined with a validated analytical method and the exposure to HCAs is estimated by dietary assessment. Biomarker analysis will be employed to estimate recent or long-term exposure to HCAs. In order to identify genetically determined risk factors in humans, cell lines are genetically engineered expressing allelic variants of acetyl- and sulfotransferases implicated in HCA metabolism. Species differences of metabolism and toxicity of HCAs are assessed and the influence of the intestinal microflora on HCA-induced toxicity is evaluated. Dietary constituents that may reduce the genotoxicity of HCAs are screened for potential protective effects in in vitro and in vivo model systems. Finally, we will aim at human intervention studies to investigate if these protective factors are relevant for man. The objectives of this project are to estimate and possibly reduce the exposure levels to HCAs in Europe, to identify populations highly susceptible to HCA toxicity, and to reduce the toxic effects of HCAs by protective factors.