Special Issue "Dietary Acrylamide: An Update on Exposure and the In Vitro and Epidemiological Evidence of Health Risks"

A special issue of Toxics (ISSN 2305-6304). This special issue belongs to the section "Toxicology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 November 2021.

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Janneke Hogervorst
Guest Editor
Centre for Environmental Sciences, Hasselt University, Hasselt, Belgium
Interests: epidemiology; risk assessment; environmental health; cancer; developmental toxicity

Special Issue Information

Dear colleagues,

Acrylamide is present in heat-treated carbohydrate-rich foods, such as cookies, potato chips, French fries, and coffee, due to their preparation at high temperatures (>120 °C). It is classified as a probable human carcinogen (IARC class 2A), based on rodent studies. In rodents, acrylamide has been shown to cause cancer in various tissues at high doses. In addition to the carcinogenic effects, acrylamide causes neurotoxicity and reproductive and developmental toxicity in animals. The public health risks of dietary acrylamide intake remain controversial. The epidemiological evidence on the association between dietary acrylamide intake and human cancer risks is still sketchy; for some cancers, increased risks have been observed in some studies but not in all. A recent meta-analysis on the association between acrylamide intake and cancer risk shows increased risks of endometrial and ovarian cancers, especially in never-smoking women.

Acrylamide and its metabolite glycidamide readily pass the placental barrier. To date, several epidemiological studies have shown that higher prenatal exposure to acrylamide is linked to reduced fetal growth. Based on animal studies on the effects of acrylamide, these epidemiological indications for an increased risk of cancer and reduced fetal growth were not expected and might indicate that animal studies do not predict the health effects of acrylamide in humans. Therefore, for a better answer to whether current dietary acrylamide exposure entails a public health risk, more in vitro and epidemiological studies on the health effects of dietary acrylamide exposure (cancer, developmental toxicity, neurotoxicity) are urgently needed. In addition, the information on dietary exposure should be updated because measures have been taken to decrease acrylamide levels in foods, both by governments and food producers. Thus, this Special Issue focuses on the estimation of current dietary acrylamide exposure and the epidemiological evidence for the health effects of dietary acrylamide intake. Authors are invited and welcome to submit original research papers, reviews, and short communications.

Dr. Janneke Hogervorst
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Toxics is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • acrylamide
  • diet
  • exposure
  • health risks
  • in vitro studies
  • epidemiology
  • cancer
  • developmental toxicity

Published Papers

This special issue is now open for submission, see below for planned papers.

Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Title: A critical appraisal for the estimation of dietary exposure to acrylamide: Disregarded intermediates and interactions
Authors: Işıl Gürsul Aktağ, Aytül Hamzalıoğlu, Tolgahan Kocadağlı, Vural Gökmen
Affiliation: Food Quality and Safety (FoQuS) Research Group, Department of Food Engineering, Hacettepe University, Ankara, Turkey
Abstract: The amount of acrylamide in asparagine rich thermally processed foods has been inclusively monitored over the past two decades. Acrylamide exposure can be estimated by using the concentration of acrylamide found in foods and alternatively, biomarkers of exposure are correlated. A better estimation of dietary acrylamide exposure is crucial for a proper food safety assessment, regulations and public health research. This review addresses the importance of the presence of neglected Maillard reaction intermediates in acrylamide formation ingested with foods and the fate of acrylamide in the gastrointestinal tract as a reactive compound. Therefore, it is questioned in this review whether acrylamide concentration in ingested foods is directly correlated with the dietary exposure to acrylamide.

Title: Acrylamide in human milk: impact of the breastfeeding mothers diet and assessment of infant exposure
Authors: Hanna Mojska 1, Iwona Gielecinska 2, Edyta Jasinska-Melon 1, Joanna Winiarek 3 and Wlodzimierz Sawicki 3
Affiliation: 1 Department of Nutrition and the Nutritive Value of Food, National Institute of Public Health-National Instutute of Hygiene, Chocimska 24, 00-791 Warsaw, Poland  2 Department of Food Safety, National Institute of Public Health—National Institute of Hygiene, Chocimska 24, 00-791 Warsaw, Poland  3 Chair and Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Gynecological Oncology of Medical University of Warsaw, Kondratowicza 8, 03-242 Warsaw, Poland
Abstract: Acrylamide concentration in the colostrum (n = 47) and in mature milk (n = 26) was determined by liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). The median content of acrylamide in colostrum was significantly (p < 0.0005) lower compared to the content in mature milk, respectively 0.05 µg /l and 0.14 µg / l). The estimated average intake of acrylamide from the hospital diet by nursing mothers was more than twice significantly (p < 0.0001) lower compared to the intake from the home diet (7.3 µg / person / day vs. 15.2 µg / person / day). In both studied periods of lactation, we found no significant correlation between the intake of acrylamide from the diet by breastfeeding mothers and its content in milk. The estimated average exposure to acrylamide in exclusively breastfed infants was 0,003 µg / kg bw / day and 0.017 µg / kg bw / day, respectively in 2–3 days of age and in 2–4 months of age. The calculated average margins of exposure (MOE) were above 10 000. Thus, the determined level of acrylamide in human milk seems to be of no risk to the breastfed infants. However, at the 95th percentile, the calculated MOE were below 10 000. Lactating women should limit their consumption of food that may be the source of acrylamide.

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