Dihydroxyacetone (DHA), also known as glycerone, is a simple carbohydrate with the chemical formula C3H6O3.
Derived from plants such as sugar cane and sugar beets, DHA is primarily used as an ingredient in sunless tanning products.
The ABC News article "Are 'Spray-On' Tans Safe? Experts Raise Questions as Industry Puts Out Warnings" states, "None of the reviewed studies tested on actual human subjects, but some found DHA altered genes of multiple types of cells and organisms when tested in different labs by different scientists after the chemical was approved for use in the consumer market."
Dr. Rey Panettieri, from the University of Pennsylvania and one of the experts involved in the review of DHA stated, "I have concerns. The reason I'm concerned is the deposition of the tanning agents into the lungs could really facilitate or aid systemic absorption -- that is, getting into the bloodstream."
He added, "These compounds in some cells could actually promote the development of cancers or malignancies, and if that's the case then we need to be wary of them."
Page two concludes.