Research Group Cartus


of Jun.-Prof. Dr. Alexander Cartus

Research fields

Selected Research areas:


Metabolism and genotoxicity of phenylpropenes

Compounds like methyleugenol, anethole, asarone or safrole belong to the group of phenylpropenes (alkenylbenzenes, phenylpropanoids). They are naturally occurring constituents of many herbs and spices and thus part of the human nutrition. Some of those compounds are (hepato)carcinogenic to rodents and are genotoxic, i.e. the compounds can covalently bind to DNA, which subsequently can cause mutations and eventually may lead to the formation of cancer.

further reading


Toxicologically Assessment of E-cigarette liquids

E-cigarettes are used as an alternative by many (ex) smokers around the world. However, potential harms to human health are not well characterized yet. We investigate the composition of vapors of e-cigarette liquid and assess their toxicological properties.

further reading


Latest publications


  • Cartus AT, Schrenk D. Metabolism of carcinogenic alpha-asarone by human P450 enzymes. Naunyn Schmeidebergs Arch Pharmacol, 2020, 393, 213223. doi: 10.1007/s00210-019-01724-0

  • Kobets T, Cartus AT, Fuhlbrueck JA, Brengel A, Stegmüller S, Duan JD, Brunnemann KD, Williams GM. Assessment and characterization of DNA adducts produced by alkenylbenzenes in fetal turkey and chicken livers. Food Chem Toxicol, 2019, 129, 424–433. doi: 10.1016/j.fct.2019.05.010

  • Stegmüller S, Schrenk D, Cartus AT. Formation and fate of DNA adducts of alpha- and beta-asarone in rat hepatocytes. Food Chem Toxicol, 2018, 116, 138-146. doi: 10.1016/j.fct.2018.04.025.

  • Dusemund B, Rietjens IMCM, Cartus A, Schaefer B, Lampen A. Plant-derived contaminants in food : Occurrence, effects and risk assessment./Pflanzliche Kontaminanten in Lebensmitteln Vorkommen, Wirkung und Risikobewertung. Bundesgesundheitsblatt Gesundheitsforschung Gesundheitsschutz, 2017, 60, 728736. doi: 10.1007/s00103-017-2561-6.

  • Cartus A, Schrenk D. “Current methods in risk assessment of genotoxic chemicals”, Food Chem Toxicol, 2017, 106, 574–582. doi: 10.1016/j.fct.2016.09.012

  • Berg K, Bischoff R, Stegmüller S, Cartus AT, Schrenk D. „Comparative Investigation of the Mutagenicity of Propenylic and Allylic Asarone Isomers in the Ames Fluctuation Assay”, Mutagenesis, 2016, 31, 4, 443–451. doi:10.1093/mutage/gew007.

  • Cartus AT, Schrenk D. "Metabolism of the carcinogen alpha-asarone in liver microsomes”, Food Chem Toxicol., 2016, 87, 103–112. doi: 10.1016/j.fct.2015.11.021


Full publication list

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