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Toxicological information

Basic toxicokinetics

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basic toxicokinetics in vitro / ex vivo
Type of information:
experimental study
Adequacy of study:
key study
2 (reliable with restrictions)
Rationale for reliability incl. deficiencies:
study well documented, meets generally accepted scientific principles, acceptable for assessment

Data source

Reference Type:
study report
Report Date:

Materials and methods

Objective of study:
Test guideline
no guideline followed
Principles of method if other than guideline:
The test substance was tested under low pH conditions (0.07 N HCl) at 37 °C in order to simulate the possible hydrolytic action on mammalian gastric contents. The hypothesis is that in the hydrochloric acid solution the tin-EHMA bond breaks leading to formation of the corresponding alkyltin chloride and simultaneous liberation of the ligand, 2-Ethylhexylmercaptoacetate (EHMA). Under these conditions EHMA, that contains an ester group, can (partially) hydrolyse to thioglycolic acid (TGA) and 2-ethylhexanol (EH).

A stock solution of the test substance in acetonitrile (2.87 mg/mL) was freshly prepared by dissolving 340.81 mg of the test substance in 100.0 mL acetonitrile. A correction for the percentage of the test substance (84.14 %) was used; the amounts of free EHTG and EH present in the test substance were taken into account in the calculations. Into a series of 4 Teflon vessels, 175 µL of a stock solution of the test substance (2.87 mg/mL) was added to 50 mL of 0.07 N HCl. In this way, the concentration of the test substance in the final 0.07 N HCl solution was 10.0 mg/L. The solution was stirred for predetermined periods at 37 °C. The temperature was maintained using an oven. A sample was taken from one of the Teflon vessels after 0.5, 1.0, 2.0 and 4.0 hours, respectively. Once a vessel had been sampled, no other sample was collected from that vessel. Fifty mL of the sample (0.07 N HCl solution) was extracted with 25 mL of heptane. The amount of EHMA and EH in the heptane layer was analysed by GC-FID. The experiments were performed in duplicate.
GLP compliance:

Test material

Details on test material:
- Name of test material (as cited in study report): Monomethyltin tris (2-ethylhexylmercaptoacetate)
- Physical state: liquid
- Analytical purity: 84.14 %
- Composition of test material, percentage of components: 84.14% Monomethyltin tris(2-EHMA) [CAS No. 57583-34-3], 14.37% Dimethyltin bis(2-EHMA) [CAS No. 57583-35-4], 1.44% Tin Tetra(EHMA), and 0.05% Trimethyltin (EHMA);
- Lot/batch No.: 39449

Results and discussion

Metabolite characterisation studies

Metabolites identified:
Details on metabolites:
The recovery of EHMA spiked to 0.07N HCl at a level of 10.0 mg/L was 125 ± 3 %.
The recovery of EH at a level of 12.7 mg/L was 92 ± 3 %.

Any other information on results incl. tables

It was observed that the simulated gastric hydrolysis of the test substance to EHMA and EH was rapid, to a level of 93.9 % after 0.5 h. Looking at the later time points, the measured amounts of EHMA and EH decreased resulting in a calculated percentage of hydrolysis of 78.0 % after 4 hours.

Based on the percentage of completion at 0.5 hours, the half-life time was estimated to be 0.27 hours.

Results (as % conversion to MMTC) for MMT(2-EHMA), by sample collection time:

0.5 h: 94 %

1 h: 91 %

2 h: 85 %

4-h: 78 % 

t1/2 (estimated) = 0.27 hours 


The data show that within 0.5 hours, most of the available EHMA ligands have been released and there is greater than 90 % hydrolysis of the test substance. Following the reaction for an additional amount of time it is evident that the amount of free EHMA in solution decreases from the initial level. In previous studies, reanalysing the samples in reverse order confirmed that this trend was real and not caused by the GC drifting out of calibration. This effect was thought to be due to a loss of free EHMA by adsorption, oxidation or the formation of other hydrolysis or reaction products.

Applicant's summary and conclusion

These results support the use of monomethyltin chloride as an appropriate surrogate for mammalian toxicology studies of monomethyltin (ethylhexylthioglycolate) via the oral route.
Executive summary:

These results support the use of monomethyltin chloride as an appropriate surrogate for mammalian toxicology studies of monomethyltin (ethylhexylthioglycolate) via the oral route.

The percentage of hydrolysis of monomethyltin (ethylhexylthioglycolate) under simulated gastric hydrolysis conditions (0.07 N HCl at 37 °C) reached a level of 93.9 % after 0.5 hours. The corresponding half-life time of the test substance was estimated to be 0.27 hours.


The chemistry of the alkyl organotins has been well studied. For organotins, like MMT(EHTG), the alky groups are strongly bound to tin and remain bound to tin under most reaction conditions. However, other ligands, such as carboxylates or sulfur based ligands (EHTG), are more labile and are readily replaced under mild reaction conditions. To assess the reactivity of MMT(EHTG) under physiological conditions simulating the mammalian stomach, an in-vitro hydrolysis test was performed. This in vitro test provides chemical information that strongly suggests both the probable in vivo metabolic pathway and the toxicokinetics of the MMT(EHTG) substance. This result verifies that under physiological conditions MMT(EHTG) is rapidly and essentially completely converted to the corresponding monomethyltin chloride, MMTC.


Specifically, in the simulated gastric hydrolysis studies at low pH (0.07 N HCl) the EHTG ligands are rapidly displaced from tin and replaced by chloride ligands; the methyl group remains attached to tin. For MMT(EHTG), > 90 % hydrolysis of the test compound occurred within 0.5 hours, and the estimated half-life was 0.27 hours. The replacement of all three EHTG ligands under these conditions is therefore a rapid and complete reaction with respect to the overall metabolic timescale.   


This same type of simulated gastric hydrolysis study was also performed on other monomethyltin and dimethyltin compounds having sulfur based ligands with the same result, rapid hydrolysis to release the sulfur based ligands and generate the corresponding methyltin chloride compounds. These studies were all conducted as part of the OECD HPV program covering the monomethyltin and dimethyltin chemicals.


Since this hydrolysis was done under simulated gastric conditions, the result is entered into this dossier as fulfilling a toxicokinetic endpoint and as a justification for read-across. As there is rapid conversion of MMT(EHTG) to MMTC, this dossier uses studies on MMTC as the source substance to fill certain specific endpoints for MMT(EHTG), the target substance, by read-across. This read-across is justified because oral exposure to MMT(EHTG) places it in the gastro-intestinal tract where, based on this study, it is hydrolysed to MMTC as the initial metabolic action. Therefore, MMTC studies can be used to fulfil the REACH requirements for MMT(EHTG) related to exposure via the oral route, in particular the mammalian toxicology endpoints of repeated dose, reproduction, developmental and in vivo toxicity. Use of studies on MMTC in a “read-across manner” to cover these specific MMT(EHTG) endpoints is fully supported both by the ECHA guidelines on when and how to apply read-across (see below). In addition, the read-across of MMTC data to MMT(EHGT) was also accepted by the OECD under the HPV program for all methyltin substances on the basis of the simulated gastric hydrolysis.


The ECHA document “Guidance on Information Requirements and Chemical Safety Assessment, Part B: Hazard Assessment”, Version 2.1, 2011, discusses the role of toxicokinetics in part B.6.2.1 “Guidance on Toxicokinetics”. This section notes the role of toxicokinetics as an important component in providing information regarding metabolism and absorption of chemicals. It comments further that data on the toxicokinetic behaviour of a substance should be considered in conducting the human health hazard assessment. In this regard, the toxicokinetics directly identify MMTC as the principal and sole organotin metabolite of MMT(EHTG) via oral exposure. 


The ECHA document “Guidance on Information Requirements and Chemical Safety Assessment, Chapter R.7.c: Endpoint Specific Guidance” section R.7.12 notes that toxicokinetics can be used as a means to assist testing strategies, study design, and the application of read-across for building substance categories. It further notes that the appropriateness or applicability of toxicokinetic studies needs to be made on a case-by-case basis, because the toxicokinetic parameters will affect the hazard profile in determining the concentration of the ultimate toxicant at the target site.