Acrylamide: A chemical created in foods when starches and other carbohydrates are overheated (over 120°C or 250°F) during cooking. There is concern that acrylamide may be a carcinogen (cause cancer).
Acrylamide is used in papermaking, ore processing, permanent-press fabrics, and dye manufacture.
Acrylamide is also polymerized to form polyacrylamides which are used as water-soluble stabilizers, for example, in waste water treatment and in gel electrophoresis.
Last Editorial Review: 6/9/2016