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EC number: 203-838-7
CAS number: 111-14-8
In a single, four-hour, whole-body inhalation exposure (Bio/dynamics
Inc., 1990), Sprague-Dawley rats (5/sex) were exposed to n-heptanoic
acid. The test substance was administered into the breathing zone of
the animals as an aerosol at a target concentration of 5.0 mg/l (limit
test). All animals were held for a 14 -day post-exposure observation
period and received daily detailed physical observations pretest through
Day 15, and body weight measurements on Days 1, 2, 3, 5, 8 and 15. After
the post-exposure period , all animals were sacrified and a complete
gross postmortem examination was performed. The test animals received an
average analytical exposure concentration, as determined
gravimetrically, of 4.6 mg/l n-heptanoic acid with a nominal
exposure concentration of 28 mg/l. Particle size distribution
measurements showed an average mass median aerodynamic diameter of 3.8
microns with an average standard deviation of 2.0. Approximately three
percent of the aerosol was one microns or less in size but 92 percent of
the aerosol was 10 microns or less in size. These results indicated the
test substance atmosphere was respirable in size to the rat. Four rats
(two males and two females) were found dead upon removal of the animals
from the chamber. All other animals survived the duration of the study.
Observations noted during exposure included labored breathing, gasping,
lacrimation, nasal discharge, matted coat and eye closure. Signs
exhibited by surviving animals upon removal from the chamber and during
the two hour post-exposure observation period on day 1 included
laborated breathing and moist rales. Similar signs persisted for a few
days after exposure and then all animals generally recovered.
Significant weight losses were observed for a few days following
exposure. Recovery of weight occurred over time and all surviving
animals were in excess of their pre-exposure body weight by termination
of the study. In conclusion, six of ten rats receiving a single
four-hour maximum attainable exposure to 4.6 mg/l n-heptanoic acid as an
aerosol, survived the exposure and subsequent 14 -day post-exposure
observation period. However, four of the ten animals died during the
exposure, and therefore the LC50 was considered to be greater than 4.6
mg/l. Moreover, signs of irritation were noted during the exposure and
for several days after the exposure before the animals recovered.
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