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J Toxicol Environ Health. 1985;15(6):745-67.

Toxic responses to acute, subchronic, and chronic oral administrations of monochlorobenzene to rodents.


Acute (single exposure), 14-d repeated exposure, 91-d subchronic, and 103-wk chronic toxicity studies of orally administered (gavage, in corn oil) monochlorobenzene were conducted in male and female Fischer-344 rats and B6C3F1 hybrid mice. A single exposure to 4000 mg/kg was lethal to male and female rats, while a single exposure to a dose as low as 1000 mg/kg was lethal to mice. Fourteen daily exposures to 1000 mg/kg caused death in rats of both sexes, but neither survival nor clinical health were compromised at 500 mg/kg in rats or mice. In the 91-d studies, wherein monochlorobenzene was administered once daily, 5 d/wk, survival was reduced by doses of 500 mg/kg and higher in rats, and by doses of 250 mg/kg and higher in mice. Dose-dependent necrosis of the liver (hepatocytes), degeneration or focal necrosis of the renal proximal tubules, and lymphoid or myeloid depletion of the spleen, bone marrow, and thymus (mild to severe) were produced by doses of 250 mg/kg or greater of monochlorobenzene in both sexes of rats and mice, although the incidences of these lesions varied considerably by sex and species. Consistent changes in the circulating blood components were not observed, but a mild porphyrinuria was detected at the higher doses. No toxic effects were observed at doses of 125 mg/kg or less. In the 2-yr studies, wherein monochlorobenzene was administered once daily, 5 d/wk, doses of 30 or 60 mg/kg in male mice and 60 or 120 mg/kg in female mice and male and female rats did not produce any evidence of toxicity. Doses of 60 or 120 mg/kg caused slight (statistically significant at 120 mg/kg; p less than 0.05) increases in the frequencies of male rats with neoplastic nodules of the liver. Increased tumor frequencies were not observed in female rats or in male or female mice receiving monochlorobenzene.

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