Cytological and chromosomal damages induced by tartrazine and two classes (III and IV) of caramel food dyes

  • Meryem Nassar University of 20 Aout 1955, Department of Natural Science and Life BP 26, Route d'El Hadaiek-Skikda 21000, Algeria; Laboratory of Research in Biodiversity Interaction, Ecosystem and Biotechnology ‘LRIBEB’, University of 20 Auguest 1955 BP 26, Route d'El Hadaiek-Skikda 21000, Algeria
Keywords: Tartrazine, Ammonia caramel, Sulphite ammonia caramel, Cytotoxicity, Genotoxicity


Food colors such as tartrazine (E102), ammonia caramel (E150c), sulphite ammonia caramel (E150d) are widely used in the food sector. These additives are thought to be a long-term toxicity source. The goal of our research is to emphasize the cytotoxic and genotoxic effects of the three food colors at various concentrations (0.5 %, 1 %, and 2 %) using Allium cepa test. The species is thought to be one of the best for assessing genotoxicity  because of its low chromosomal number and lengthy chromosomes. The findings revealed that the three dyes have a cytotoxic impact, as seen by root growth inhibition after 120  h of incubation. The three food dyes had a genotoxic effect, as measured by a decrease in mitotic index and an increase in the frequency of chromosomal aberrations such as chromosomal bridge, stickiness, and vagrant chromosomes, at both concentrations 0.5% and 1%.  At 2 %,  the mitotic index was reported as  0 and several cytological abnormalities (binucleate and micronucleated cells and fragmented nuclei) were noted.  However, further in vitro and in vivo cytogenetic experiments treating cytotoxicity and genotoxicity of the three food dyes using alternative test models (animals, cell lines) will be needed to better understand their mechanisms of action.



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How to Cite
Nassar, M. Cytological and Chromosomal Damages Induced by Tartrazine and Two Classes (III and IV) of Caramel Food Dyes. European Journal of Biological Research 2022, 12, 11-21.
Research Articles