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New substances added to HHS Report on Carcinogens
Date:6/10/2011

ere is now sufficient evidence from studies in humans to show that individuals with higher measures of exposure to formaldehyde are at increased risk for certain types of rare cancers, including nasopharyngeal (the nasopharnyx is the upper part of the throat behind the nose), sinonasal, as well as a specific cancer of the white blood cells known as myeloid leukemia. Formaldehyde is a colorless, flammable, strong-smelling chemical that is widely used to make resins for household items, such as composite wood products, paper product coatings, plastics, synthetic fibers, and textile finishes. Formaldehyde is also commonly used as a preservative in medical laboratories, mortuaries, and some consumer products, including some hair straightening products.

Six substances reasonably anticipated to be human carcinogens:

Captafol was found to induce cancer in experimental animal studies, which demonstrated that dietary exposure to captafol caused tumors at several different tissue sites in rats and mice. Captafol is a fungicide that had been used to control fungal diseases in fruits, vegetables, ornamental plants, and grasses, and as a seed treatment. It has been banned in the United States since 1999, but past exposures may still have an effect on health.

Cobalt-tungsten carbide (in powder and hard metal form) showed limited evidence of lung cancer in workers involved in cobalt-tungsten carbide hard metal manufacturing. Cobalt-tungsten carbide is used to make cutting and grinding tools, dies, and wear-resistant products for a broad spectrum of industries, including oil and gas drilling, as well as mining. In the United States, cobalt-tungsten hard metals are commonly referred to as cemented or sintered carbides.

Certain inhalable glass wool fibers made the list based on experimental animal studies. Not all glass wool or man-made fibers were found to be carcinogenic. The specific glass wool fibers referred to in this report have been
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Contact: Robin Mackar
rmackar@niehs.nih.gov
919-541-0073
NIH/National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
Source:Eurekalert

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