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Ecotoxicological information

Short-term toxicity to fish

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Description of key information

NOEC - 0.32 mg/L

Key value for chemical safety assessment

LC50 for freshwater fish:
0.32 mg/L
LC50 for marine water fish:
0.22 mg/L

Additional information

The phthalate esters are1,2-benzenedicarboxylic acids with side chain esters ranging in carbon chain length from C1 to C13.The US EPA High Production Volume (HPV) chemical challenge program has proposed grouping phthalate esters into a single category, divided into 3 sub-categories, this based on the structural similarities of the substances and their physicochemical and toxicological properties. These sub-categories are: low molecular weight phthalates, transitional phthalates, and high molecular weight phthalates. The high molecular weight phthalates are defined as being produced from alcohols with straight-chain carbon backbones of >C7 or a ring structure. These include varying mixed isomers of linear and branched diheptyl, dioctyl, dinonyl, didecyl, diundecyl and ditridecyl phthalate. All exhibit low solublity in water and are regarded as being too insoluble to exhibit acute or chronic toxicity. Read-across from closely related phthalates thus appears reasonable and this is supported by the data, below:

Acute toxicity to fish (Salmo gairdneri) of the substance (chain length C9 -C11) has been investigated over a 96 hour exposure period with fish exposed to the substance at the limits of solubility in the test medium. No toxicity was observed. No toxicity was observed in a second test in the same species with fish exposed to the substance at a concentration in excess of the water solubility.

Acute toxicity to fish (Salmo gairdneri) of a phthalate ester with C11 chain length has been investigated over a 96 hour exposure period. The LC50 was in excess of 1.4 mg/L, the highest concentration examined which was at or in excess of the water solubility of the substance. Acute toxicity to another freshwater species, fathead minnow, has been determined over a 96 hour period. The LC50 was in excess of 1.3 mg/L, the highest concentration examined which was at or in excess of the water solubility of the substance. Testing in another freshwater species, bluegill, resulted in a LC50 in excess of 0.73 mg/L, the highest concentration examined. Acute toxicity to a marine species, sheepshead minnow, has been determined. The 96 hour LC50 was in excess of 0.22 mg/L, the highest concentration investigated which was at or in excess of the water solubility of the substance.

Acute toxicity to fish (Brachydanio rerio) of a phthalate ester with C8 -C10 chain length has been investigated over a 96 hour exposure period with fish exposed to the substance in a water accommodated fraction (measured concentration 0.32 mg/L). No toxicity was observed.