Carcinogenic tobacco-specific nitrosamines in Indian tobacco products

Food Chem Toxicol. 1989 Nov;27(11):751-3. doi: 10.1016/0278-6915(89)90080-x.


Various Indian tobacco products--cigarette, bidi, chutta and their smoke, chewing tobacco and snuff (used for inhalation as well as a dentifrice) were analysed for their content of tobacco-specific nitrosamines (N'-nitrosonornicotine, 4-(N-nitrosomethylamino)-1-(3-pyridyl)-1-butanone and N'-nitrosoanatabine) by means of a gas chromatograph interfaced with a thermal energy analyser. These tobacco-specific nitrosamines were detected at microgram/g levels in all products investigated and in ng quantities in tobacco smoke. The highest concentrations were in chutta tobacco and snuff used for inhalation. The use of these Indian tobacco products may lead to high exposure to the potentially carcinogenic tobacco-specific nitrosamines.

MeSH terms

  • Carcinogens*
  • Chromatography, Gas
  • India
  • Nicotiana / analysis*
  • Nitrosamines / toxicity*
  • Plants, Toxic*


  • Carcinogens
  • Nitrosamines