France to investigate food additive that harmed rats

E171 is commonly used as a whitening and brightening agent.France ordered an inquiry on Friday after scientists reported that a food additive widely used in Europe to whiten toothpaste and chewing gum could cause precancerous lesions in rats. Researchers from France and Luxembourg gave the additive, called E171 in Europe and the United States, to lab rats in their drinking water for 100 days. The additive also inhibited the immune systems of the rats and "accelerated" the growth of lesions induced for the experiment, France's INRA agricultural research institute, which took part in the study, said in a statement.

Source: Feed3

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