In humans, sodium arsenite has caused skin irritation, skin sensitization and other skin effects. It was of high acute oral toxicity to laboratory animals. Repeated oral administration to rodents and dogs caused various effects including damage to the bile ducts, liver, spleen, testes, bone marrow and skeletal muscle, immune system suppression, and blood effects, whereas changes in the electrical activity of the heart were reported in cats. Single oral doses caused maternal and foetal deaths in pregnant mice and hamsters, and an increase in foetal malformations in mice. Foetal malformations occurred following injection of sodium arsenite into pregnant rats, mice and hamsters. When injected into mice, it caused chromosome damage in the bone marrow cells, and genotoxic effects (including chromosome damage) have also been induced in mammalian cells in culture. No mutagenic activity was detected in Ames bacterial tests, but it has produced DNA damage in bacteria and mutations in yeast. Though limited studies revealed no evidence that sodium arsenite was carcinogenic to rats and mice exposed by the oral route inorganic arsenic compounds as a generic class are carcinogenic to man, producing lung and skin cancer.

Date of Publication: 1990

Number of Pages: 9

CAS Number*: 7784-46-5

Format: PDF available for immediate download

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