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Int J Toxicol. 2009 Jul-Aug;28(4):259-65. doi: 10.1177/1091581809337630.

Acute oral and inhalation toxicities in rats with cadmium telluride.

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  • 1Department of Environmental and Occupational Health, Faculty of Medicine, University of Montreal, PO Box 6128, Main Station, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.


Cadmium telluride (CdTe) thin film photovoltaic has become one of the leading technologies in the solar renewable energy market. Little is known about CdTe's toxicological profile and regulatory agencies usually apply cadmium (Cd) criteria as a best approximation. However, CdTe may have different toxicological properties. The goal of this study is to determine the median lethal concentration/dose of CdTe and to compare these values with those of Cd. Using a rat model, the method followed conforms to that described in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) guidelines and in the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Health Effects Test Guidelines. The median lethal concentration of CdTe was established at 2.71 mg/L, showing a very low variability between genders. The median lethal dose was determined to be greater than 2000 mg/kg. These results clearly show that CdTe is less toxic than Cd.

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