EPA has recently made available a new toxicological review of ethylene oxide in connection with the prestigious Integrated Risk Information System database (IRIS, visit http://www.epa.gov/iris/index.html for details). The review focusses on cancer endpoints following inhalation of this gas.
Evidence of carcinogenicity from human studies (notably lymphohaematopoietic cancer seen in exposed workers) was not considered conclusive on its own. However, the Agency found extensive evidence of increased tumour incidences in laboratory animals and concluded that ethylene oxide is “carcinogenic to humans” by the inhalation route, likely via a mutagenic mode of action. Applying age-dependent adjustment factors, the Agency derived a lifetime chronic exposure level corresponding to 1 extra cancer case among 1,000,000 exposed individuals: 0.0006 μg/m3.

US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Evaluation of the inhalation carcinogenicity of ethylene oxide. In support of summary information on the Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS). Revised external review draft; dated July 2013.


The above item was taken from the September 2013 issue of Toxicology and Regulatory News which is sent automatically to members of bibra (click here for more details).

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