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Biodegradation in water: screening tests:

As per the study conducted by UERL report no. -13826-35-2/01/2015/RBD28-days Manometric respirometry test following the OECD guideline 301F was used to determine the ready biodegradability of the test item 3-phenoxybenzylic alcohol (CAS No. 13826-35-2). The test system included control, test item and reference item. The concentration of test and reference item (Sodium Benzoate) chosen for both the study was 100mg/L, while that of inoculum was 10ml/l. ThOD (Theoretical oxygen demand) of test and reference item was determined by calculation. % Degradation was calculated using the values of BOD and ThOD for test item and reference item.

The BOD28value of3-phenoxybenzylic alcohol(CAS No. 13826-35-2) was observed to be 0.164 mgO2/mg. ThOD was calculatedas 2.397 mgO2/mg.Accordingly, the % degradation of the test item after 28 days of incubation at 20 ± 1°C according to manometric respirometry test was found to be 6.84%.Based on the results, the test item, under the test conditions, was found to be Non- Biodegradable at 20 ± 1°C over a period of 28 days.

The biodegradation in water of 3-Phenoxybenzyl alcohol has been predicted with the BIOWIN program (version 4.10). Based on the results from the predictions with Biowin models it can be concluded that 3-Phenoxybenzyl alcohol, is not readily biodegradable in water. 

The Fugacity model III indicates the half life of the 3-Phenoxybenzyl alcohol as 15 days in water medium, which clearly indicate that the substance 3-Phenoxybenzyl alcohol is not persistent in water medium as well as soil (half life 30 days).

Based on the above results only 6.84 % degradation is observed in the period of 28 days .Also the half life predicted as per EPI prediction model verison 4.1,the half life was found to be 15 days(Fugacity model) indicating the substance to be not readily biodegradable in water.

Biodegradation in soil

Shaohua Chen(2012) presented a study in which the degradation of 3-PBA in different contaminated soils by strain DG-02 was determined for 15 days . Study includes both sterile and non sterile soil types .In the case of sterilized soil inoculated with strain DG-02, similar enhanced degradation was observed and 90.2% of added 3-PBA was removed from the soil within 15 days. In contrast, more than 95% of the added 3-PBA remained in the sterilized soil that was not inoculated, and only 4.5% of the added 3-PBA was degraded during the experiment. Without any inoculum, there was a lag period of approximately 3 days before 3-PBA degradation in the soils; whereas apparently no lag phase was observed with the presence of DG-02 Moreover, trace amounts of 3-PBA metabolites protocatechuate, phenol, and 3,4-dimethoxy phenol were also detected in soil inoculated with strain DG-02, but no metabolites were found in the non-inoculated soil.  

The degradation of 3-PBA reached 100% within 72 hr at low initial concentrations of 50 mg/L. Thus indicating the substance to be readily biodegradable in soil.

EPI prediction model version 4.1 estimated that 3-phenoxybenzyl alcohol is expected to be found not predominantly in soil and its non persistence estimate is based on its transformation in this medium. Its half-life in soil, 30 days (720 hrs), does not exceeds the threshold of 120 days as per Annex XIII of REACH.

Based on the above summaries reported in different studies , 3-phenoxybenzyl alcohol (CAS NO.-13826-35-2) was found to be readily biodegradable in soil considering 100 % degradation in 72hr and non persistant in soil considering the half life to be 30 days.