Sodium hypochlorite was irritant and corrosive to the skin, eyes and mucous membranes of man and laboratory animals. In man, ingestion produced effects on the gastro-intestinal tract, central nervous system and lungs. A number of cases of sensitization have been reported. It was of low acute oral toxicity in rodents, causing liver abnormalities, and on repeated ingestion there were slight effects on the immune system. Long-term administration in the drinking-water produced no evidence of carcinogenicity in rodents. Carcinogenic activity was not detected in limited studies involving skin applications to mice, although sodium hypochlorite promoted the activity of known skin carcinogens. Mice treated orally exhibited sperm head abnormalities but there was no evidence of chromosomal damage in mice treated orally or by injection. There was some indication of chromosomal damage in mammalian cells in culture. Sodium hypochlorite was mutagenic in the Ames bacterial test and produced DNA damage in bacteria.

Date of Publication: 1990

Number of Pages: 11

CAS Number*: 7681-52-9

Format: PDF available for immediate download

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