Considering the vast use of sweeteners by the Brazilian population and the constant need for toxicological studies of food additives, this study aimed to evaluate the cytotoxic and mutagenic potentials of the sodium saccharin and/or sodium cyclamate sweeteners in plant (Allium cepa) and animal (Mus musculus) test systems based on concentrations permitted by the Brazilian laws. In A. cepa, both the sweeteners individually and their combinations concentration and exposure time (ET: 48, 72 and 168 h) dependently exerted cytotoxic and mutagenic effects. Similarly, an increased in micronuclei formation was also observed by the sweeteners in peripheral blood cells in mice. More toxic effects were observed with the combination doses at 168 ET. There may be a synergistic effect and DNA damage with an increasing concentration and ET. In conclusion, the concentrations considered safe by the Brazilian laws had significant cytotoxic and mutagenic activity on the eukaryotic cells.
Key words: Allium cepa, Mus musculus, sweeteners, toxicity.
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