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Immunotoxicity

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Description of key information

No studies on immunotoxicity of Be metal are available. A total of two publications are relevant for this endpoint. Both publications (one abstract and one peer-reviewed) reflect the same experimental study.

Key value for chemical safety assessment

Additional information

The study by Haley (1992 and 1994) demonstrated an increase in numbers of lymphocytes from lung lobe of cynomolgus monkeys exposed to Be metal by intrabronchiolar instillation. An equivalent response was not seen in animals exposed to BeO. There was also a marked increase in severity of pulmonary lesions in animals exposed to Be metal relative to BeO.

This study demonstrates an immune response of Be that is primarily restricted to the metal and seen to a much lesser extent with BeO. The response is significant, particularly early following exposure but drops off and is equal to control at the end of the study. Considering the animal model used and the degree of response, the effect may be relevant to humans. It is not known whether the exposure levels investigated in this study is relevant for a human exposure scenario.

Justification for classification or non-classification

The studies are not appropriate for classification purposes.