The role of phenols in catalysis of nitrosamine formation

Ernest A. Walker, Brigitte Pignatelli, Marlin Friesen

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Phenolic compounds which can potentially form C‐nitroso derivatives by reaction with nitrite can act as catalysts on the formation of an N‐nitrosamine from nitrite and a secondary amine. Using a gas chromatographic technique, this effect has been measured for di‐ and trihydric phenols and for a number of naturally occurring phenolic compounds in the case of N‐nitrosodiethylamine (NDEA) formation. The kinetics for this catalytic effect have been studied in detail with dinitrosoresorcinol and two possible mechanisms have been suggested. In addition, it has been shown that a number of naturally occurring phenols catalyse the formation of NDEA under alkaline conditions and such catalysis can lead to the artifactual formation of nitrosamines during their analysis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)81-88
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of the Science of Food and Agriculture
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1982

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Food Science
  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


Dive into the research topics of 'The role of phenols in catalysis of nitrosamine formation'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this