paba dmae cancer

Bill Newcomb nuke at reed.edu
Mon Apr 20 20:38:51 EST 1992


In article <1992Apr17.125811.17035 at yang.earlham.edu> allens at yang.earlham.edu (Allen Smith) writes:
>In article <31544 at sdcc12.ucsd.edu>, jtucker at sdcc13.ucsd.edu (Joe T. Ucker       ) writes:
>> 
>>   
>> 	I recently found a DMAE bottle in a healthfood store and
>> 	found the DMAE in TWinlabs to be in  a PABA (para-amino ben-
>> 	zoic acid) base.  The solvent is indeed water.  
>> 
>> 	So I checked out the biomed libraries' reports on PABA.  I
>> 	found a few reports of similar substances being
>> 	carcinogenic.  I'm an amateur and I don't have these
>> 	articles handy, but I believe these were pyrridines.  I

Pyridines as a group tend to be fair carcinogens, although there are many
exceptions. 

>> 	found Peter Alex the med student on the shuttle today and
>> 	he suggested the benzoic acid was the problem.  He 

Whoa a minute here. Benzoic acid != benzene. Coca cola has a buttload of BA
in it, and although it might cause cancer, it's not considered to be a major
carcinogen. The body has few problems metabolizing benzoic acid. Benzene, on
the other hand, is a mess.

>> 	said that it is hypothesized that benzene itself is the
>> 	culprit in causing cancer.  We talked a little about the
>> 	chemical structure and the floating electrons of the 
>> 	benzene ring and the efficacy of this structure in fucking
>> 	with DNA replication.  Benzene is the same thing responsible
>> 	for the potent carcinogenic activities of burnt barbeque
>> 	meterial which is basically just a clump of benzene riings.

Actually a bit inaccurate. polyaromatics share some electronic features of
benzene, but their size and asymmetry give them different properties.

>> 	
>> 	The journals were mostly unreadable to this novice but 
>> 	by the availability of benzocaine, sunscreens containing
>> 	benzene-type chemicals (which react with UV light to create
>> 	free raqdicals) that this issue is either unresolved or
>> 	not yet critical (as the journals seemed to suggest- in-
>> 	conclusive.)  PATMS (peter alex the med student) believed
>> 	the necessity of these products in medical practices
>>         currently outweighs their dangers.  This didn't make sense
>> 	to me, aS the use in suncreen is to PREVENT cancer while
>> 	he claimed these same substances CAUSED cancer.

Oxybenzone et al. absorb UV, but don't photodecompose to radicals (not to
any great extent, I don't think). Quinones are not very much like benzene,
as they have rather large internal dipoles that make them a bit more
reactive. 

>> 
>> 	Maybe this shouldn't be taken all that seriously.  But
>> 	I'm sure a few others as well as myself would appreciate
>> 	it if a more biochemically-minded reader could make sense
>> 	of this and give a few words to the newsgroups.
>> 

I can't find the structure of DMAE right now (someone has made off with our
Merck, hopefully temporarily) but IU wouldn't sweat too hard about it.
Hundreds of drugs, not to mention proteins, have aromatic components, so
unless this molecule is unduly greasy, you're probably ok. Asidefrom any
general toxicity, that is :-)

nuke at reed.edu



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