Asked to assess the results of an ERF life-time carcinogenicity study on aspartame that involved prenatal exposure (see Toxicology and Regulatory News 2007, 46(8), 143), an EFSA Panel concluded that there was no indication of any carcinogenic potential and no reason to revise the previously established acceptable daily intake of 40 mg/kg bw. As with an earlier ERF aspartame study, the Panel felt that the increased incidence of lymphomas and leukaemias was probably the result of chronic respiratory disease. In addition, the Panel did not consider the observed increase in mammary tumours to be “indicative of a carcinogenic potential of aspartame”, as the incidence was only slightly above the background rate reported in some studies and was not increased in the previous ERF study (in which much higher doses of aspartame were given).

[Updated Scientific Opinion of the Panel on Food Additives and Nutrient Sources added to Food (ANS) on a request from the European Commission related to the 2nd ERF carcinogenicity study on aspartame taking into consideration study data submitted by the Ramazzini Foundation in February 2009. Adopted on 19 March 2009. The EFSA Journal 2009, 1015, 1. Available at from the European Food Safety Authority’s website.] {181684}

The above item was taken from the June 2009 issue of Toxicology and Regulatory News which is sent automatically to members of bibra (click here for more details).

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