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Nitrous gases and zinc in the crosshairs
Date:7/28/2009

particular substance causes cancer, has a mutagenic effect on gametes or poses a risk to unborn children during pregnancy. Analyses of the substances' sensitising and skin resorption effects were also performed.

In the carcinogenic substances category there are, this year, a total of seven revisions or alterations. These include the categorisation of the chromates (except lead and barium chromate) as carcinogenic in humans. According to the new MAK and BAT Values List, chromium (VI) compounds damage gametes and cause skin sensitivity. They received an "H" warning, which means that absorption via the skin can significantly contribute to the substance's toxicity. The Commission also checked 13 substances for pregnancy risks. These include di-n-butyl phthalate from the phthalates group, phenyltin compounds, phosphine, propionic acid, zinc and its inorganic compounds with which, if the MAK value is adhered to, there is no risk of foetal damage. There were a total of 13 changes and additions to the "BAT Value, BLW, BAR and EKA" section of the list.

In 2009, the Commission also published additional Biological Substance Reference Values (BAR values), which were first published in 2008. These values are not limits; instead, they define the "background exposure level" of a substance in the body. The BAR values permit comparisons between the level of exposure experienced by the general population and the exposure measured in the workplace. BAR values were determined for the following substances: acrylonitrile, soluble barium compounds, beryllium and its inorganic compounds and nickel and its compounds, plus o-toluidine and vinyl chloride.

As every year, once the current list has been submitted to the Federal Minister for Labour and Social Affairs, it is subject to a comments deadline. During this period, detailed written explanatory statements on every substance evaluated are requested from the Commission's Scientific Office by the end of the yea
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Contact: Cornelia Pretzer
Cornelia.Pretzer@dfg.de
49-228-885-4320
Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft
Source:Eurekalert

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