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Crit Rev Toxicol. 2013 Apr;43(4):363-90. doi: 10.3109/10408444.2013.792328.

A toxicological review of the propylene glycols.

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1
Tox-Logic Consulting, LLC, Petaluma, CA, USA. tox-logic@hotmail.com

Abstract

The toxicological profiles of monopropylene glycol (MPG), dipropylene glycol (DPG), tripropylene glycol (TPG) and polypropylene glycols (PPG; including tetra-rich oligomers) are collectively reviewed, and assessed considering regulatory toxicology endpoints. The review confirms a rich data set for these compounds, covering all of the major toxicological endpoints of interest. The metabolism of these compounds share common pathways, and a consistent profile of toxicity is observed. The common metabolism provides scientific justification for adopting a read-across approach to describing expected hazard potential from data gaps that may exist for specific oligomers. None of the glycols reviewed presented evidence of carcinogenic, mutagenic or reproductive/developmental toxicity potential to humans. The pathologies reported in some animal studies either occurred at doses that exceeded experimental guidelines, or involved mechanisms that are likely irrelevant to human physiology and therefore are not pertinent to the exposures experienced by consumers or workers. At very high chronic doses, MPG causes a transient, slight decrease in hemoglobin in dogs and at somewhat lower doses causes Heinz bodies to form in cats in the absence of any clinical signs of anemia. Some evidence for rare, idiosyncratic skin reactions exists for MPG. However, the larger data set indicates that these compounds have low sensitization potential in animal studies, and therefore are unlikely to represent human allergens. The existing safety evaluations of the FDA, USEPA, NTP and ATSDR for these compounds are consistent and point to the conclusion that the propylene glycols present a very low risk to human health.

PMID:
23656560
DOI:
10.3109/10408444.2013.792328
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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