Potential mechanism for Calvados-related oesophageal cancer
ABSTRACT The old Normandian habit of consumption of hot Calvados is associated with an increased risk of oesophageal cancer compared to other alcoholic beverages. The role of alcohol consumption in the risk of oesophageal cancer is well established. The first metabolite of alcohol, acetaldehyde is a potential local carcinogen in humans. Accordingly, different acetaldehyde concentrations in different beverages could account for some of the variations in cancer risk with regard to the type of alcoholic beverage. Eighteen samples of farm-made Calvados were collected in Normandy. Samples of commercially available beverages were purchased, including factory-made Calvados, other spirits, wines, beer and cider. The samples were analysed gas-chromatically for acetaldehyde and ethanol concentrations. All results are expressed as mean+/-SD. The mean acetaldehyde concentration of all Calvados samples (1781+/-861 microM, n =25) differed highly significantly (p<0.001) from that of all wine samples (275+/-236 microM), from all other spirits samples (1251+/-1155 microM, p<0.05), and from all beer and cider samples (233+/-281 microM, p<0.001). Farm-made Calvados and farm-made cognac had the highest mean acetaldehyde concentration of the measured beverages. The high concentration of acetaldehyde combined with possible effects of the high temperature at which Calvados is consumed could account for the increased risk of Calvados-related oesophageal cancer.
- SourceAvailable from: Dirk W Lachenmeier[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: This contribution aims to examine systematically the evidence on the impact of the quality of unrecorded alcohol products on health consequences. Systematic computer assisted review of the literature. There are a number of pathways related to alcohol quality that may lead to acute or chronic health problems. The following constituents and contaminants of alcoholic beverages were identified as likely contributors to these problems: (i) toxic metals (e.g. lead) from contaminated water sources or unsuitable distillation equipment; (ii) volatile constituents, such as acetaldehyde or higher alcohols, which may be produced in significant amounts due to faults in production technology or microbiological spoilage; (iii) ethyl carbamate (urethane), a carcinogenic contaminant with major occurrence in certain fruit and sugarcane spirits; (iv) biologically active flavour compounds (e.g. coumarin in cosmetics used as non-beverage alcohol); (v) toxic compounds used to denature alcohol (e.g. methanol or diethyl phthalate). In addition, the often higher ethanol content may have detrimental health effects. These pathways should not be assumed as present for all subcategories of unrecorded alcohol, but are more relevant to certain types and geographic regions. A health impact of unrecorded alcohol over and above the effect of ethanol cannot be excluded. More research is urgently needed, especially with respect to liver disease and alcohol poisoning as endpoints. A feasible approach for new research on the effects of unrecorded alcohol could be based on a representative sample from low socioeconomic regions with high prevalence of unrecorded consumption.Drug and Alcohol Review 07/2010; 29(4):426-36. DOI:10.1111/j.1465-3362.2009.00140.x · 1.55 Impact Factor
- [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: There is a lack of knowledge regarding the composition, production, distribution, and consumption of artisanal alcohol, particularly in the developing world. In Nahualá, an indigenous Mayan municipality located in highland Guatemala, heavy alcohol consumption appears to have had a significant negative impact on health, a major role in cases of violence and domestic abuse, and a link to street habitation. Cuxa, an artisanally, as well as commercially produced sugarcane alcohol, is widely consumed by heavy drinkers in this community. Cuxa samples from all distribution points in the community were obtained and chemically analyzed for health-relevant constituents and contaminants including methanol, acetaldehyde, higher alcohols, and metals. From those, only acetaldehyde was confirmed to be present in unusually high levels (up to 126 g/hl of pure alcohol), particularly in samples that were produced clandestinely. Acetaldehyde has been evaluated as "possibly carcinogenic" and has also been identified as having significant human exposure in a recent risk assessment. This study explores the reasons for the elevated levels of acetaldehyde, through both sampling and analyses of raw and intermediary products of cuxa production, as well as interviews from producers of the clandestine alcohol. For further insight, we experimentally produced this alcohol in our laboratory, based on the directions provided by the producers, as well as materials from the town itself. Based on these data, the origin of the acetaldehyde contamination appears to be due to chemical changes induced during processing, with the major causative factors consisting of poor hygiene, aerobic working conditions, and inadequate yeast strains, compounded by flawed distillation methodology that neglects separation of the first fractions of the distillate. These results indicate a preventable public health concern for consumers, which can be overcome through education about good manufacturing practices, as well as financial incentives to separate the acetaldehyde-rich fractions during distillation.Science of The Total Environment 10/2009; 407(22):5861-8. DOI:10.1016/j.scitotenv.2009.08.012 · 3.16 Impact Factor
- [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Acetaldehyde is a volatile compound naturally found in alcoholic beverages, and it is regarded as possibly being carcinogenic to humans (IARC Group 2B). Acetaldehyde formed during ethanol metabolism is generally considered as a source of carcinogenicity in alcoholic beverages. However, no systematic data is available about its occurrence in alcoholic beverages and the carcinogenic potential of human exposure to this directly ingested form of acetaldehyde outside ethanol metabolism. In this study, we have analysed and evaluated a large sample collective of different alcoholic beverages (n=1,555). Beer (9+/-7 mg/l, range 0-63 mg/l) had significantly lower acetaldehyde contents than wine (34+/-34 mg/l, range 0-211 mg/l), or spirits (66+/-101 mg/l, range 0-1,159 mg/l). The highest acetaldehyde concentrations were generally found in fortified wines (118+/-120 mg/l, range 12-800 mg/l). Assuming an equal distribution between the beverage and saliva, the residual acetaldehyde concentrations in the saliva after swallowing could be on average 195 microM for beer, 734 microM for wine, 1,387 microM for spirits, or 2,417 microM for fortified wine, which are above levels previously regarded as potentially carcinogenic. Further research is needed to confirm the carcinogenic potential of directly ingested acetaldehyde. Until then, some possible preliminary interventions include the reduction of acetaldehyde in the beverages by improvement in production technology or the use of acetaldehyde binding additives. A re-evaluation of the 'generally recognized as safe' status of acetaldehyde is also required, which does not appear to be in agreement with its toxicity and carcinogenicity.Food and Chemical Toxicology 09/2008; 46(8):2903-11. DOI:10.1016/j.fct.2008.05.034 · 2.61 Impact Factor