Reports

Natural toxicants in human foods: psoralens in raw and cooked parsnip root

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  21 Aug 1981:
Vol. 213, Issue 4510, pp. 909-910
DOI: 10.1126/science.7256284

Abstract

Parsnip root contains three photoactive, mutagenic, and photocarcinogenic psoralens in a total concentration of about 40 parts per million. These chemicals are not destroyed by normal cooking procedures (boiling or microwave); thus humans are exposed to appreciable levels of psoralens through the consumption of parsnip and possibly other psoralen-containing foodstuffs. The toxicologic consequences to man of such exposure may be speculated on the basis of medicinal and laboratory studies, but epidemiologic data are not available.

Stay Connected to Science