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Regul Toxicol Pharmacol. 2006 Jul;45(2):104-18. Epub 2006 May 15.

Review of the toxicity of chemical mixtures containing at least one organochlorine.

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  • 1L.S. McCarty Scientific Research & Consulting, 94 Oakhaven Drive, Markham, Ont., Canada L6C 1X8.


An analysis of current research on mixture toxicity was conducted by critically reviewing published journal articles. The scope was limited to complex mixtures (more than two components) where at least one component was a chlorinated organic chemical. Although the basics of dose-response are widely accepted for mixtures, a number of technical issues, including dose metrics and the unquantified influence of toxicity modifying factors, confound data interpretation and restrict the ability to establish reliable determinations of the presence, nature, and extent of additivity. Lack of knowledge about dose level influences and species-specific variations contribute further interpretational limitations. Within this context, available data indicates that most tested mixtures are near or below simple dose/concentration additivity. Exceptions (both positive and negative) tend to occur when tested mixtures have only a few components or where sensitive whole organism or sub-organismal changes are used as the response metric. Available information does not routinely identify the presence of chlorine as a marker either of a particular type of toxicity or consistently greater potency. The most profound difficulty is the problem of clearly defining when and why similarity and dissimilarity of toxic action is expected for a particular mixture. This impediment largely results from the lack of a generally accepted, technical classification for mode/mechanism of toxic action coupled with the lack of a generally accepted classification scheme for mode/mechanism of toxicity interactions.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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