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Environmental Assessment

IRIS Toxicological Review of Formaldehyde (Inhalation) (External Review Draft 2010)


EPA announces the release of the Toxicological Review of Formaldehyde-Inhalation Assessment in the June 2, 2010 Federal Register Notice. This draft assessment is provided for public viewing and comment. Public comments received on the Toxicological Review within 90 days after the release of the FRN will be provided to the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) independent scientific peer review committee for its consideration. Any comments not received within the requested time period will be considered by EPA in revisions. This FRN also includes notice of a public listening session that was held on July 27, 2010.

Report Information

EPA is conducting an independent expert peer review by the National Academy of Sciences and public comment of the scientific basis supporting the human health hazard and dose-response assessment of Formaldehyde-Inhalation that when finalized will appear on the Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS) database. This draft IRIS health assessment addresses both noncancer and cancer human health effects that may result from chronic inhalation exposure to this chemical. Please refer to IRISTrack - Formaldehyde-Inhalation for the latest schedule updates.

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Kacee Deener
  • by phone at:   703-347-8514
  • by email at:  deener.kathkeen@epa.gov


The draft toxicological review of formaldehyde - inhalation assessment provides scientific support and rationale for the hazard and dose-response assessment pertaining to chronic inhalation exposure to formaldehyde. Formaldehyde is present in a wide variety of products including some plywood adhesives, abrasive materials, insulation, insecticides and embalming fluids. The major sources of anthropogenic emissions of formaldehyde are motor vehicle exhaust, power plants, manufacturing plants that produce or use formaldehyde or substances that contain it (i.e. glues), petroleum refineries, coking operations, incinerating, wood burning and tobacco smoke.


Sep 1990The oral RfD for formaldehyde was posted to the IRIS database.
May 1991The cancer assessment for formaldehyde was posted to the IRIS database.
Jan 1998EPA begins the formaldehyde reassessment under the IRIS Program.
May 2010EPA initiated an interagency science consultation on the review of the draft Toxicological Review of formaldehyde.
Jun 2010EPA released an external review draft of the formaldehyde reassessment for public review and comment. Also released was the interagency review draft with comments.
Jun 2010National Academy of Sciences (NAS) conducted an external peer review meeting to review the draft document on Jun 7-8, 2010 in Washington DC.
Jul 2010NAS held their second external review meeting to discuss the draft report on July 6, 2010.
Aug 2010NAS held their third external review meeting to discuss the draft report on Aug 9-10, 2010 in Washington, DC.
Oct 2010NAS held their fourth external review meeting to discuss the draft report on Oct 12-13, 2010 in Washington, DC.
Dec 2010NAS held their fifth and final external review meeting to discuss the draft report on Dec 13-14, 2010 in Los Angelos, CA.
May 2011NAS's Board on Environmental Studies and Toxicology (BEST) releases the NAS Review of the Environmental Protection Agency's Draft IRIS Assessment of Formaldehyde (Final Report).

Next Steps

Concluding the public review and comment period, public listening session, and NAS independent scientific peer review, the draft Toxicological Review will be revised and will then be submitted for a final Internal EPA review and an EPA-led Interagency Science Discussion. As a last step, the final assessment will be posted on the IRIS database.

Additional Information

Comments on the assessment may be submitted and reviewed using the e-Government Regulations.gov Web site. From the site, select Environmental Protection Agency and the key word EPA-HQ-ORD-2010-0396 (for the docket ID).


U.S. EPA. IRIS Toxicological Review of Formaldehyde (Inhalation) (External Review Draft 2010). U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC, EPA/635/R-10/002A, 2010.


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