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Hot Dogs Lead to DNA Mutation

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Tagged As: Biology, DNA, Evolution, and Science

The hot dog is one of America's most recognized dishes. Although some individuals are able to gulp them in the dozens, the hot dog is routinely derided as simply disgusting. Hot dog haters now have an additional armament; researchers at the University of Nebraska determined the unusually high concentration of sodium nitrite in hot dogs is capable of mutating DNA. Sodium nitrite has been linked to dangerous spikes in susceptibilty (sometimes as high as 700%) to pancreatic cancer and leukemia. Essentially, the chemical serves as a catalyst for producing N-nitroso compounds that increase DNA mutations fourfold, leading to cancerous growths in lab animals.

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