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Organic Journal Paper

0 February 21 2018, 14:15 in Science Essays

Delaram Jahangari


The different kinds of cancers are indeed caused by a specific carcinogen. The early definition of carcinogenic is the ability of a compound to stimulate the process of cancer development in man and animals by acting on different receptors, cells, tissues and organs (Oliveira, 2007). However, today this definition has improved in such a way that broader concepts were explained in a more specific context. In an experimental point of view, a compound is carcinogenic when the administration of any dose to a laboratory animal induces a statistically significant rise in the occurrence of one or more type of tissue differentiation, or neoplasia, compared in the control group where no carcinogen is administered (Oliveira, 2007).

In the laboratory, common chemical compounds such as solvents are known to be carcinogen when inhaled, ingested or during skin contact. Some of these solvents are the core of some organic laboratories, where it is but normal to have these carcinogens and that researches could not proceed without any of these carcinogen substances. Some of these solvents include formaldehyde, benzene, ethylene oxide, and nitro compounds. Hence, occupational exposure to these carcinogens are increased in chemists and other people who work with these solvents and that they have high risk of developing cancer later in their lives.


The World Health Organization has stated that exposure benzene is a major public health concern because benzene is a well-established cause of cancer in humans (WHO, 2010). Researches have found out that benzene causes acute myeloid leukemia and limited evidences show that benzene may also cause acute and chronic lymphocytic leukemia, non-Hodgkin;s lymphoma and multiple myeloma (WHO, 2010). The cause of the development of this diseases may be due to the fact that chronic exposure to benzene can cause aplastic anemia by reducing the production of both red and whit blood cells from bone marrow in humans (WHO, 2010). Moreover, both B-cell proliferation and T-cell proliferation are reduced by benzene, which cause the host’s immune system to deteriorate and increase its risk to different kinds of infections.

In 2006, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has found out that there is sufficient evidence in experimental animals for the carcinogenity of nitrite in combination with amines or amides and that ingested nitrate or nitrite may result in endogenous nitrosation, which eventually cause cancer (Dunn, 2016). Moreover, in their studies in rats, results have shown that if sodium nitrate and specific secondary or tertiary amines or amides are combined, the risk of developing benign and malignant esophageal tumors, hemiangiosarcomas, hepatocellular adenomas and carcinomas, lung squamous-cell carcinomas or benign and malignant nasak cavity tumors was observed (Dunn, 2016). After 10 years after the IARC has found out these results, colon cancer and rectal cancer were added to the list of potential cancers caused by these compounds (Dunn, 2010).

Formaldehyde is very common in laboratories and this compound has also a potential carcinogenic effect. The IARC has found out that formaldehyde may cause nasopharyngeal cancer, leukemia, sinonasal cancer, lymphohematopoeitic cancer, pancreatic cancer, Hodgkin lymphoma and head and neck cancers including pharyngeal, laryngeal, lung, and brain cancer (International Agency for Research on Cancer, 2006).


Indeed, chemicals found in the laboratory, which we thought are safe, actually are potential carcinogen. Hence, proper protection must be used when working in the laboratory to prevent the health risks of these occupational hazards, which can affect the life and long-term well being of an individual.


Dunn, A. J. (2016). Evidence on the Carcinogenecity of Nitrite in Combination with Amines or

Amides.California environmental Protection Agency. Retrieved January 30, 2018, from

International Agency for Research on Cancer. (2006). Formaldehyde.Retrieved January 30,

2018, from

Oliveira, P. A. (2007). Chemical Carcinogens. Anais de Academia Brasileira de Ciencias, 79,


World Health Organization. (2010). Exposure to Benzene: A Major Public Health Concern.

Retrieved January 30, 2018, from http://www.who.
























Antioxidant Activity of Some Organic Compounds














Fruits and vegetables are said to be healthy and can reduce the risk of developing some diseases. This is because of the different nutrients and vitamins, which are usually seen in fruits and vegetables. These also are said to have antioxidant activity. Antioxidants are bioactive compounds that inhibit or delay he oxidation of molecules, which are categorized as natural or synthetic antioxidants. The increasing evidences that synthetic antioxidants causes adverse effects such as liver damage, due to its toxicity and carcinogenicity, urges the scientific community to develop and discover natural sources of antioxidants (Altemimi, 2017). Plants have been the major source of these antioxidants, which eventually have been used to treat different diseases. These medicinal plants include tamarind, cardamom, lemon grass, and galangal basil.

Imbalance in the production of reactive oxygen species leading to negative cellular alterations is known as oxidative damage. Reactive oxygen species are partially reduced forms of oxygen such as hydrogen peroxide, superoxide, singlet oxygen, hydroxyl radical (Prussia, 2006). These cellular damages caused by cellular oxidation, may accumulate and further cause a major health problem. An antioxidant is defined as any compound, which is able to oppose cellular oxidation (Prussia, 2006). Hence, the human body needs a lot of antioxidant to counteract the harmful effects of cellular oxidation.


Diets, which are rich in fruits and vegetables, are found to reduce the risks of cardiovascular diseases and some chronic degenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s diseases, associated with oxidative damage (Prussia, 2006). The main antioxidants present in vegetables are ascorbic acid, carotenoids, vitamin E, phenolics and sulfur antioxidants.

Phenolic acids include, benzoic acid, cinnamic acids, caffeic acids, flavonoids, coumarins and anthocyanins (Prussia, 2006). Caffeic acid and coumaric acid are found in berries. This group is derived from the aromatic amino acids phenylalanine and tyrosine (Prussia, 2006). Aside from their antioxidant activity, these phenolic acids have also other functions such as, preventions of microbial infections and UV-radiation-induced diseases. Carotenoids have conjugated double bonds, which determine their antioxidant activity (Prussia, 2006). Ascorbic acid and vitamin E are established to have very strong antioxidant capabilities.

Fruits, such as peaches, grapes, apples, blackberries, and Mammea longifolia, in particular have been linked to reduction of some diseases due to its antioxidant effects. Moreover, this antioxidant activity of these fruits, like the aforementioned vegetables, can be mainly attributed to the presence of ascorbic acid, vitamin E, anthocyanins, phenolics, and tannins (Altemimi, 2017). Peaches have the organic compounds hydroxycinnamic acids, chlorogenic, and neochlorogenic acids but not carotenoids (Altemimi, 2017). On the other hand, grapes and its juices have been found out to have phenolic compounds and anthocyanin pigment malvidin-3,5-diglucoside, which inhibits the oxidation of bad cholesterols such as low-density lipoprotein. Moreover, grape seeds are good source of polyphenol compounds including monomerics such as catechin, epitachin, and gallic acid, and polymerics such as procyanidins (Altemimi, 2017).


Indeed, organic compounds, which we are not familiar with, are actually vitamins and minerals that are essential maintaining a healthy body and reduce the risks of developing different diseases. In fact these essential vitamins and minerals, are incorporated in our natural resources, such as fruits and vegetables.


Altemimi, A. (2017). Phytochemicals: Extraction, Isolation, and Identification of Bioactive

Compounds from Plant Extracts. MDPI, 6, 1-23.

Prussia, S. E. (2006). Nutritional Quality of Fruits and Vegetables. Elsevier.


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