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Food Chem Toxicol. 1996 Jul;34(7):639-50.

Safety evaluation of perfluoropolyethers, liquid polymers used in barrier creams and other skin-care products.

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Ausimont SpA, Bollate, Milan, Italy.


Fomblin HC products are a 'family' of high-purity perfluoropolyethers manufactured for barrier cream and other personal care applications which involve direct application to the skin. To confirm the safety of such use, representative Fomblin HC products were tested in experimental animals for acute toxicity, primary and repeated insult irritancy, sensitization and photosensitization, subacute oral toxicity and comedogenicity; mutagenicity was examined in vitro, and irritancy or sensitization was also investigated on human skin (in patch tests with volunteers). A high molecular weight Fomblin HC only was tested in rats for subacute oral toxicity and in man for dermal effects. Single oral doses of 15 g/kg body weight were without evident toxicity to rats, as were single dermal applications or an ip injection at 5 g/kg. No primary irritant action was seen in rabbits or man, and similarly there was no evidence of skin sensitization or photosensitization in guinea pigs, or sensitization in man. No mutagenic action on Salmonella strains of tester bacteria was seen. In repeat dose irritancy or oral toxicity tests in rabbits or rats, no adverse effects of Fomblin HC products were noted; in particular, daily oral administration (1000 mg/kg/day) to rats over 28 days produced no significant reaction. No comedogenic action was found. From the known chemistry of the perfluoropolyethers, the test programme reported here and the limited published data, it is concluded that the intended use of Fomblin HC products in formulations applied to human skin has a high margin of safety.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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