International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) - Summaries & Evaluations


VOL.: 4 (1974) (p. 231)

5. Summary of Data Reported and Evaluation

5.1 Animal carcinogenicity data

Bis(chloromethyl)ether (BCME) is carcinogenic to mice following inhalation, skin application and subcutaneous administration. In newborn mice it is carcinogenic after a single subcutaneous exposure. In the rat it is carcinogenic by inhalation and subcutaneous administration.

5.2 Human carcinogenicity data

A high incidence of predominantly oat-cell carcinoma in a small population of laboratory workers exposed to BCME strongly suggests that exposure to this compound constitutes a serious human lung cancer hazard.

There is also epidemiological evidence to suggest that exposure to BCME may constitute a lung cancer risk amongst workers exposed to it as a contaminant in the manufacture of the related chloromethyl methyl ether (CMME) (see separate monograph on CMME).

Subsequent evaluation: Suppl. 7 (1987)

Last updated: 17 March 1998

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