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Br J Cancer. 1974 Mar;29(3):252-69.

The effects of the inhalation of asbestos in rats.


Two experiments in which SPF Wistar rats were exposed by inhalation to dust clouds of the UICC standard reference samples for periods of between one day and 2 years are described. All the samples of asbestos produced asbestosis which continued to progress after removal from exposure but only a little fibrosis was observed in control rats. Lung tumours, ranging in severity from adenomata to squamous carcinomata, were produced by all samples but in the controls there were only a few adenomata and none of the more serious tumours. Of the 20 tumours which metastasized, 16 occurred after exposure to one or other of the 2 chrysotile samples. In addition, a total of 11 mesotheliomata occurred, 4 of which were with crocidolite and 4 with Canadian chrysotile. Two of the mesotheliomata occurred with only one day's exposure to asbestos. There was a positive association between asbestosis and lung tumours.

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