Furan in processed food: formation, toxicology and monitoring: a Review

  • Payam Safaei
  • Afsaneh Mohajer
  • Gholamreza Jahed Khaniki Food Safety Division, Department of Environmental Health, School of Public Health, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
Keywords: Furan, Liver, Genotoxicity, Carcinogenicity, Monitoring


Furan is an organic, and volatile compound that formed in some of the heat-treated foods during thermal processing. Thermal degradation of ascorbic acid, amino acids, carbohydrates, unsaturated fatty acids, and carotenoids can form this compound. In Europe, furan dietary exposure was estimated to range between 1.23 and 1.01 µg/kg bw/day for adults and 3 to 12 month-old infants, respectively. It is known that this compound has hepatotoxic and hepatocarcinogenic effects in rats and mice, also stimulate carcinogenicity is possible features in a genetic pathway. Since a genotoxic mode of action cannot be ejected for furan-induced tumor formation, there is a relatively small difference between possible human exposure and the doses in experimental animals required to produce carcinogenic effects. This review summarizes the present knowledge of furan toxicity, human dietary exposure to furan. As well as, the role of some important factors, for example, heating temperature for furan formation process in a vast range of heated foods, increases the need to establishing the risk resulting from the genotoxic and carcinogenic characteristics of this compound.
How to Cite
Safaei P, Mohajer A, Jahed Khaniki G. Furan in processed food: formation, toxicology and monitoring: a Review. JFSH. 3(1/2):1-.
Review Article(s)