Migration studies and toxicity evaluation of cyclic polyesters oligomers from food packaging adhesives

Sara Ubeda, Margarita Aznar, Anna Kjerstine Rosenmai, Anne Marie Vinggaard, Cristina Nerín*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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Multilayer materials used in food packaging are commonly manufactured with a polyurethane adhesive layer in its structure that may contain cyclic esters oligomers as potential migrants. However, little is known about their toxicity. In this work, two cyclic esters of polyurethane are evaluated in migration from 20 multilayer packaging samples. They were composed by adipic acid (AA), diethylene glycol (DEG) and isophthalic acid (IPA) and their structure was AA-DEG and AA-DEG-IPA-DEG. The concentration of these compounds in migration exceeded the maximum level established by Regulation EU/10/2011 (10 ng g−1). Bioaccessibility of both compounds was evaluated by studying gastric and intestinal digestion. The studies showed that the concentration of the compounds decreased during digestion and that their hydrolysed molecules increased. Furthermore, endocrine activity in vitro assays were performed. A weak androgen receptor antagonism was identified, whereas no arylhydrocarbon receptor activity or binding to the thyroid hormone transport protein was found.
Original languageEnglish
Article number125918
JournalFood Chemistry
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Oligomers
  • Migration
  • NIAS
  • Polyurethane adhesive
  • Food packaging
  • Bioaccessibility
  • Endocrine activity


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