The goal of this project is to evaluate benzyl acetate as a pancreatic carcinogen in rodent pancreas. Carcinoma of the pancreas is a major cause of cancer deaths in the United States because the disease is diagnosed at a late clinical stage when therapy is ineffective. Recognition of causes of this cancer is therefore of special importance. A recent bioassay conducted by the National Toxicology Program has suggested that benzyl acetate, a food and cosmetic additive and a natural product, induces adenomas in the exocrine pancreas of male F-344 rats. Interpretation of the significance of this finding is complicated by the fact that the overall incidence of the adenomas was low, and by the fact that corn oil was used as a vehicle for administration of benzyl acetate by gavage. A retrospective evaluation of the incidence of acinar cell adenomas in """"""""control"""""""" groups of F-344 rats given corn oil by gavage has shown an increased incidence in males in comparison with control groups that were not given corn oil.
Specific aims are to evaluate the effect of benzyl acetate on the pancreas in the absence of corn oil gavage; to compare the responsiveness of F-344 and Lewis strain rats to benzyl acetate; to compare the efficacy of administration of benzyl acetate by gavage in coconut oil and by mixing in the diet; to evaluate the effect of benzyl acetate on the pancreas of male rats in a long-term study; and to evaluate the effect of benzyl acetate in the hamster pancreas in a pilot study. The incidence of pancreatic adenomas, carcinomas, and precursor lesions will be determined by autopsy and histologic evaluation.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS)
Research Project (R01)
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Chemical Pathology Study Section (CPA)
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Dartmouth College
Schools of Medicine
United States
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Longnecker, D S; Pettengill, O S; Davis, B H et al. (1991) Characterization of preneoplastic and neoplastic lesions in the rat pancreas. Am J Pathol 138:333-40
Longnecker, D S; Roebuck, B D; Curphey, T J et al. (1990) Evaluation of promotion of pancreatic carcinogenesis in rats by benzyl acetate. Food Chem Toxicol 28:665-8
Longnecker, D S; Roebuck, B D; Curphey, T J et al. (1986) Effects of corn oil and benzyl acetate on number and size of azaserine-induced foci in the pancreas of LEW and F344 rats. Environ Health Perspect 68:197-201