Semicarbazide Formation in Azodicarbonamide-Treated Flour: A Model Study

Food Research Division, Bureau of Chemical Safety, Health Products and Food Branch, Health Canada, Address Locator 2203D, Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0L2, Canada.
Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry (Impact Factor: 2.91). 10/2004; 52(18):5730-4. DOI: 10.1021/jf0495385
Source: PubMed


Semicarbazide was previously found in foods that were in contact with rubber gaskets foamed at high temperatures with a blowing agent azodicarbonamide. Because azodicarbonamide is an approved flour additive in certain countries, we set out to ascertain if semicarbazide is formed during the baking process from flours containing that additive. The levels of semicarbazide in baking flour treated with azodicarbonamide and bread baked from such flours were determined by isotope dilution (13C15N2-semicarbazide) liquid chromatography electrospray tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). The samples were homogenized with HCl, extracted with n-pentane, derivatized with 2-nitrobenzaldehyde, and the derivative was extracted with ethyl acetate. After solvent exchange to 10% acetonitrile in water containing 0.1% acetic acid, the samples were analyzed using a 2.1 mm x 150 mm C18 column eluted with 2 mM ammonium formate in water/methanol (40:60). Semicarbazide was formed during the dry heating of commercial azodicarbonamide-containing flours at temperatures of 150-200 degrees C reaching levels of 0.2 mg/kg. Similar levels of semicarbazide were found in the crusts of breads made from azodicarbonamide-treated flour.

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