Acrylamide is one of the nastiest chemicals to be found in food. For a start it is odourless and forms a colourless crystalline monomer but with significant reactivity with a range of other compounds as well as itself.
It is so poisonous, the International Agency for Research on Cancer classified AA as a probable carcinogen in humans, in 1994 (Markovic et al., 2018).
Industrially, it is extremely important because it is a raw material for many processes including the manufacture of polymers such as polyacrylamide for clothing and for managing wastewater treatment. It is also needed for cosmetics production and in various types of dye and pigment manufacture (Abdel-Daim et al., 2015; Acaroz et al., 2018).
Acrylamide is often found in food especially fried foods. It has been detected in french fries, biscuits, breakfast cereals, crackers, crisps, bread and toast and in roasted coffee (Zhang et al., 2012; Loaec et al., 2014; Markovic et al., 2018).
How Is Acrylamide Produced?
Acrylamide is produced by the Maillard reaction which occurs between amino acids and reducing sugars but with the amino acid, asparagine in particular. carbohydrate-rich foods are particularly susceptible especially when they are cooked at high temperatures as in frying (Zhang et al., 2012).
It is highly water soluble and of low molecular weight. It is also easily absorbed in the agstrointestinal tract and widely distributed throughout the body (Yildizbayrak & erkan, 2018).
Toxicity Of Acrylamide
Acrylamide has diverse, well‐known toxic effects, including neurotoxicity, genotoxicity, reproductive toxicity, and immunotoxicity in cell lines and animal models (Zhang et al., 2012; Fang et al., 2014; Liu et al., 2015; Zamani et al., 2017).
Toxicity due to acrylamide is associated with oxidative stress (Oliveira et al., 2009; Pan et al., 2018).
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