Analysis of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in cooking oil fumes

Arch Environ Health. 1994 Mar-Apr;49(2):119-22. doi: 10.1080/00039896.1994.9937464.


Various samples of cooking oil fumes were analyzed to an effort to study the relationship between the high incidence of pulmonary adenocarcinoma in Chinese women and cooking oil fumes in the kitchen. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in samples of cooking oil fumes were extracted, chromatographed, and measured by fluorescence spectrophotometer. The samples included oil fumes from three commercial cooking oils and fumes from three catering shops. All samples contained benzo(a)pyrene (BaP) and dibenzo (a,h)anthracene (DBahA). In addition, the concentration of DBahA was 5.7 to 22.8 times higher than that of BaP in the fume samples. Concentrations of BaP and DBahA were, respectively, 0.463 and 5.736 micrograms/g in refined vegetable oil, 0.341 and 3.725 micrograms/g in soybean oil, and 0.305 and 4.565 micrograms/g in vegetable oil. Investigation of PAH concentrations at three catering shops showed that the level of BaP at a Youtiao (deep-fried twisted dough sticks) shop was 4.18 micrograms/100 m3, 2.28 micrograms/100 m3 at a Seqenma (candied fritters) workshop, and 0.49 micrograms/100 m3 at a kitchen of a restaurant; concentrations of DBahA were 33.80, 14.41, and 3.03 micrograms/100 m3, respectively. The high concentration of carcinogens, such as BaP and DBahA, in cooking oil fumes might help explain why Chinese women, who spend more time exposed to cooking oil fumes than men, have a high incidence of pulmonary adenocarcinoma.

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma / chemically induced*
  • Adenocarcinoma / epidemiology*
  • Air Pollution, Indoor / adverse effects
  • Air Pollution, Indoor / analysis*
  • Benz(a)Anthracenes / adverse effects
  • Benz(a)Anthracenes / analysis*
  • Benzo(a)pyrene / adverse effects
  • Benzo(a)pyrene / analysis*
  • China / epidemiology
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid
  • Cooking*
  • Environmental Monitoring
  • Epidemiological Monitoring
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Lung Neoplasms / chemically induced*
  • Lung Neoplasms / epidemiology*
  • Occupations
  • Plant Oils / adverse effects
  • Plant Oils / chemistry*
  • Restaurants
  • Sex Factors
  • Spectrometry, Fluorescence


  • Benz(a)Anthracenes
  • Plant Oils
  • Benzo(a)pyrene
  • 1,2,5,6-dibenzanthracene