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Synthetic Sweetener Consumption and Bladder Cancer Trends in the United States


RECENT experimental evidence has demonstrated that high doses of synthetic sweeteners cause bladder cancer in rodents. In rats, the oral administration of a cyclamate–saccharine mixture alone or combined with cyclohexylamine, a metabolite of cyclamate, induced a high frequency of bladder carcinoma1. These tumours also developed in mice after bladder implantation of cholesterol–cyclamate or cholesterol–saccharine pellets1,2. These studies prompted the Department of Health, Education and Welfare to restrict the general use of cyclamates and to undertake further laboratory studies on the toxicity of synthetic sweeteners. As a first step in evaluating whether synthetic sweeteners are carcinogenic in man, we have examined the consumption patterns of these agents and the trends for bladder cancer in the United States.

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BURBANK, F., FRAUMENI, J. Synthetic Sweetener Consumption and Bladder Cancer Trends in the United States. Nature 227, 296–297 (1970).

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