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Crossword clues for carcinogen

Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
▪ And officials of federal, international and California agencies regard it as a potential or probable carcinogen.
▪ Cadmium is a carcinogen that can also damage the kidneys.
▪ Chipboard and other pressed wood products are made with a resin containing formaldehyde, an irritant and suspected carcinogen.
▪ Extracts from both petrol and diesel exhausts contain carcinogens.
▪ Indeed, asbestos is a prime example of how marginal exposure to carcinogens does not cause disease.
▪ Many more carcinogens have been identified since then.
▪ The specific carcinogens, however, that cause the colorectal cancers in humans remain unknown.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

carcinogen \car*cin"o*gen\ (k[aum]r*s[i^]n"[-o]*j[e^]n), n. Any substance that produces cancer; as, to test for carcinogens in the drinking water.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

"cancer-causing substance," 1853, from carcinoma + -gen.


n. A substance or agent that can cause cancer.


n. any substance that produces cancer


A carcinogen is any substance, radionuclide, or radiation that is an agent directly involved in causing cancer. This may be due to the ability to damage the genome or to the disruption of cellular metabolic processes. Several radioactive substances are considered carcinogens, but their carcinogenic activity is attributed to the radiation, for example gamma rays and alpha particles, which they emit. Common examples of non-radioactive carcinogens are inhaled asbestos, certain dioxins, and tobacco smoke. Although the public generally associates carcinogenicity with synthetic chemicals, it is equally likely to arise in both natural and synthetic substances. Carcinogens are not necessarily immediately toxic, thus their effect can be insidious.

Cancer is any disease in which normal cells are damaged and do not undergo programmed cell death as fast as they divide via mitosis. Carcinogens may increase the risk of cancer by altering cellular metabolism or damaging DNA directly in cells, which interferes with biological processes, and induces the uncontrolled, malignant division, ultimately leading to the formation of tumors. Usually, severe DNA damage leads to apoptosis, but if the programmed cell death pathway is damaged, then the cell cannot prevent itself from becoming a cancer cell.

There are many natural carcinogens. Aflatoxin B, which is produced by the fungus Aspergillus flavus growing on stored grains, nuts and peanut butter, is an example of a potent, naturally occurring microbial carcinogen. Certain viruses such as hepatitis B and human papilloma virus have been found to cause cancer in humans. The first one shown to cause cancer in animals is Rous sarcoma virus, discovered in 1910 by Peyton Rous. Other infectious organisms which cause cancer in humans include some bacteria (e.g. Helicobacter pylori ) and helminths (e.g. Opisthorchis viverrini and Clonorchis sinensis ).

Dioxins and dioxin-like compounds, benzene, kepone, EDB, and asbestos have all been classified as carcinogenic. As far back as the 1930s, industrial smoke and tobacco smoke were identified as sources of dozens of carcinogens, including [[benzo(a)pyrene|benzo[a]pyrene]], tobacco-specific nitrosamines such as nitrosonornicotine, and reactive aldehydes such as formaldehyde—which is also a hazard in embalming and making plastics. Vinyl chloride, from which PVC is manufactured, is a carcinogen and thus a hazard in PVC production.

Co-carcinogens are chemicals that do not necessarily cause cancer on their own, but promote the activity of other carcinogens in causing cancer.

After the carcinogen enters the body, the body makes an attempt to eliminate it through a process called biotransformation. The purpose of these reactions is to make the carcinogen more water-soluble so that it can be removed from the body. However, in some cases, these reactions can also convert a less toxic carcinogen into a more toxic carcinogen.

DNA is nucleophilic, therefore soluble carbon electrophiles are carcinogenic, because DNA attacks them. For example, some alkenes are toxicated by human enzymes to produce an electrophilic epoxide. DNA attacks the epoxide, and is bound permanently to it. This is the mechanism behind the carcinogenicity of [[benzo(a)pyrene|benzo[a]pyrene]] in tobacco smoke, other aromatics, aflatoxin and mustard gas.

Usage examples of "carcinogen".

Because it is the refractory tars in which polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and some other carcinogens are concentrated.

Even though plants, too, were trying to fend off animals with poisons and carcinogens, one of which had wormed into her.

He inhaled, then blew a stream of tars and carcinogens toward the ceiling.

A total of sixteen known carcinogens, fourteen alkalis, and numerous other compounds with known biological activity are included in the four thousand plus compounds.

Robert Bronsky's report on the composition of cigarette smoke-the more than four thousand compounds, the sixteen known carcinogens, the fourteen alkalis, the irritants, and all that other stuff.

Human response to carcinogens is taken as linear in the dose received -- directly proportional, with no weird factors.

Probably she could boil away the more volatile phenols and other organic carcinogens.