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Carcinogen Database

The Carcinogen  Database is made with the view that a thorough knowledge of the existing carcinogenic agents will help mankind globally, to be aware of substances or agents that can cause cancer and thus prevent or minimize their usage and exposure to them.  Also, this will enable development of more cancer surveillance programs in United States and the world. The carcinogen database is developed by procuring data from published material such as research articles, books and other validated resources.


Carcinogen Name (Substance or agent which can cause cancer)

Type(s) of Cancer

Carcinogen prevalence (in different sources)



Bladder tumour

Industrial workmen exposed to this chemical are at risk for the development of bladder tumour.

Ann R Coll Surg Eng. 1956 Jun; 18(6): 366-383

Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons

Stomach cancer

Stomach cancers, are reported to occur predominantly from polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons present in home-smoked meat products, when they are consumed.

Bibl Nutr Dieta. 1980;(29):57-61

Lead [Pb]

Breast cancer

Lead (Pb) is known to contaminatinate the environment and water supplies. It is time and again reported to cause cancer.

Biol Trace Elem Res. 2010 Aug;136(2):127-39


Bone marrow cancer

Benzene exposure from industries and chemical laboratories could damage bone marrow and lead to cancer.

Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2012 Aug; 9(8): 2875-2893


Lung cancer

Occupational expore to berryllium is studied and reported as a risk factor for developing cancer in human.

Crit Rev Toxicol. 2012 Feb;42(2):107-18


Liver, Large intestine and Breast cancers

Acetaldehyde (AA) concentrations are associated with increased cancer risk.

Genes Nutr. 2010 Jun; 5(2): 121-128

Ultra Violet (UV) rays

Skin cancer

UV radiation is the major etiologic agent in the development of skin cancer. UV radiation cause DNA damages and genetic mutations

Int J Dermatol. 2010 Sep;49(9):978-86


Tumors of Kidney and Liver

They are chemicals in the oil refining and petrochemical industry and is an occupational hazard that could lead to cancer.

Environ Res. 1992 Oct;59(1):238-49

Ionizing radiation


People who have been exposed to it regularly, for medical, occupational or environmental reasons can have the risk of getting cancer.

Int J Radiat Biol. 2009 June; 85(6): 467-482


Oral cancer

The use of zolpidem is associated with subsequent cancer risk in Taiwanese patients.

Mayo Clin Proc. 2012 May; 87(5): 430-436


Lung cancer

Long term cannabis use increase the risk of getting lung cancer

Eur Respir J. 2008 Feb; 31(2): 280-286


Cell formation and Tumor

Lipid-oxidation products, ingested with food or produced endogenously represent a risk.

Am J Clin Nutr. 1993 May;57(5 Suppl):779S-785S

Hot drinks (Coffee,tea and mate)

Esophageal Cancer (EC)

Thermal injury to the esophageal mucosa due to consuming large amounts of hot drinks has been suspected to be a risk factor for EC.

Int J Cancer. 2009 Aug 1; 125(3): 491-524

Hair dye


Scientific report(s) show the association between maternal hair dye used and neurobalstoma (a type of cancer that forms in certain types of nerve tissues) in offspring.

Cancer Causes Control. 2005 Aug;16(6):743-8


Tumor in bladder, lungs, ovary, kidney and pancreas

Workmen exposed to this chemical Xenylamin in industries may lead to cancer.

Ann R Coll Surg Engl. 1956 Jun; 18(6): 366–383


Oesophagal squamous cell carcinoma

It is published that traditional beers contains the carcinogen nitrosamines which are produced from the brewing process.

S Afr Med J. 2015 Sep 21;105(8):656-8

Polychlorinated biphenyls

Testicular cancer

Industrialization results in the production of potentially carcinogenic environmental toxins such as polychorinated biphenyls.

Int J Occup Environ Med. 2010 Oct;1(4):160-70


Pancreatic cancer

All Alcoholic beverages and alcohol manufacturing industry are major sources. It is found that regular intake of high concentrations of alcohol could lead to cancer.

Gastroenterology. 2013 Jun; 144(6): 1252–1261


Stomach cancer

High levels of nitrates are harmful and can act as carcinogens causing stomach cancer. Sources of nitrates may include runoff from fertilized agricultural lands and industrial waste water, septic tanks and private sewage disposal systems.

World J Gastroenterol. 2009 May 14; 15(18): 2204–2213 . Illinois Department of Public Health, Environmental Health Fact Sheet

Coal and wood smoke

Lung cancer and Bronchial cancer

Indoor emissions or smoke from household coal combustion  of coal and wood are classified as group 1 carcinogen. Frequent environmental expore to this smoke are found to be causing lung cancer.

Environ Health Perspect. 2010 Dec; 118(12): 1743–1747


Skin cancer

Kasmiri people have a portable fire blanket called kangri under their clothes in order to keep them warn during heavy winter season.  This has led to skin cancer in a number of individuals.  

Br Med J. 1910 Sep 3; 2(2592): 589–591

Fat food

Colon cancer

In take of regular fat food can cause obesity. This may give chances of developing colon cancer. Reports say that insulin acts as a biochemical mediator between obesity and colon caner. Hyperinsulinaemia, which occurs in type II diabetes, plays a vital role in the pathogenesis of colon cancer.

Gut. 2006 Feb; 55(2): 285–291

Herpes virus

Human cancer

Herpes virus infections in humans are associated with carcinogesis. This virus can cause cancer in human.

Yale J Biol Med. 2008 Mar; 81(1): 52–53

Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT)

Breast cancer 

The incidence of breast cancer following the decline in use of Harmone Replacement Therapy (HRT) is reported in scientific publications. 

J Fam Plann Reprod Health Care. 2013 Apr;39(2):80-8

Simian virus 40

Bone and Breast cancer

Simian virus 40 is also found to be an infectious carcinogen. When people are infected by such viruses, there is a possibility to develop cancer. 

Clin Microbiol Rev. 2004 Jul; 17(3): 495–508

Helicobacter pylori

Gastric cancer

Proven reservoir (source) for Helicobacter Pylori (H. pylori) development (colonization), is the human stomach; Transmission of H. pylori infection from other sources such as faeces, vomitus, contaminated water (due to poor sanitation conditions in developing nations), etc. have been reported.

Clin Microbiol Rev. 2010 Oct; 23(4): 713-739. Aliment Pharmacol Ther 2000; 14 (Suppl. 3): 7-12. Clin Microbiol Rev. 2006 Jul; 19(3): 449-490. J R Soc Med 1996; 89:674-678. Book: Helicobacter pylori: Physiology and Genetics, Chapter 40: Gastric Cancer.

Human papilloma virus

Cervical cancer and cancers of the head and neck (caused by Oral HPV).

Human Papilloma Virus (HPVs) infections which cause cancer is a sexually transmitted virus (especially transmitted through gential contact, such as vaginal and anal sex). It could also be transmitted through mouth and throat. However not all HPVs are harmful. Only some of them can cause cancer.

Int J Gynecol Cancer. 2012 Nov;22(9):1570-6. Cervical Cancer Overview, National cervical cancer coalition.


Cancers of skin, liver, lung, kidney and bladder

Arsenic is an element present in various compounds throughout the earth's crust. However, mainly ingestion of water supply and medicinal preparation, containing arsenic can cause cancer. Fish contains high concentrations of organic arsenic, which is less toxic when compared to inorganic arsenic.

Environ Health Perspect. 1992 Jul; 97: 259-267

Heterocyclic amines[HCAs]

Colon and Breast cancer

The carcinogens such as heterocyclic amines are produced during cooking of meat and fish at high temperatures.

Cancer Sci. 2004 Apr;95(4):290-9. Environ Health Perspect. 1996; 104:280-288


Lungs, Brain tumor and many other cancers

Harmful exposure to Asbestos happens in occupational settings. Some developing countries have sheds or even construct rooms and houses with Asbestos as roofs. Long-term exposure or living under Asbestos roofs may lead to cancer.

Acupunct Electrother Res. 2006;31(1-2):61-125