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IRIS Toxicological Review of Methanol (External Review Draft; December 2009)

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Archived files are provided for reference purposes only. The file was current when produced, but is no longer maintained and may now be outdated. Persons with disabilities having difficulty accessing archived files may contact the NCEA Webmaster for assistance. Please visit http://epa.gov/ncea to access current information.


Contact
Jeffrey S. Gift
by phone at:   919-541-4828
by fax at:   919-541-0245
by email at:  gift.jeff@epa.gov

NOTE: The IRIS Toxicological Review of Methanol (external review draft; December 2009) was released for public comment and external peer review in January 2010 (Federal Register Notice Jan 12, 2010). The draft assessment was placed on hold in June 2010 (Press Release Announcement Jun 15, 2010) pending a review of certain underlying cancer studies. The non-cancer portion of the draft assessment was not impacted by the review of the cancer studies and was subsequently re-released for public comment and external peer review (Press Release Announcement Apr 11, 2011). The non-cancer methanol assessment peer review panel met in July 2011 and that panel’s report is available. The original draft assessment (December 2009) has been archived but is available on this web page for the sake of transparency.

In March 2012 EPA announced that it would no longer rely on certain data (Ramazzini update) that were utilized in the December 2009 draft assessment to characterize the carcinogenic potential of methanol. The timeline for the development and completion of the revised methanol cancer assessment will be available on IRIS Track in the near future.


Downloads/Related Links

This download(s) is distributed solely for the purpose of pre-dissemination peer review under applicable information quality guidelines. It has not been formally disseminated by EPA. It does not represent and should not be construed to represent any Agency determination or policy.

Related Link(s)

Public Comments

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 keyword “EPA-HQ-ORD-2009-0398" (for the docket ID) to comment on this report.

Background
Methanol is a high production volume chemical with many commercial uses. It is a basic building block for numerous chemicals. Many of its derivatives are used in the construction, housing or automotive industries. Consumer products that contain methanol include varnishes, shellacs, paints, windshield washer fluid, antifreeze, adhesives, deicers, and Sterno heaters. This draft IRIS health assessment addresses both non-cancer and cancer human health effects that may result from chronic exposure to this chemical. This draft assessment provides an inhalation reference concentration (RfC) for chronic non-cancer health effects, a cancer assessment, and a reassessment of the oral reference dose (RfD). This is the first RfC and cancer assessment for methanol.

History/Chronology

Sep 1988EPA posted the assessment of an oral reference dose for methanol on the IRIS Database.
Jul 1993EPA revised the oral reference dose for methanol.
May 2002EPA started draft development of an IRIS reassessment of methanol.
Jun 2009An external peer review of unpublished New Energy Development Organization (NEDO) studies (for a 24-month rat study and an 18-month mouse study) was completed.
Dec 2009EPA hosted an interagency science consultation on the draft IRIS Toxicological Review of Methanol.
Jan 2010EPA released the External Review Draft for public review and comment, and announced the public listening session would be held on February 23, 2010. [Federal Register Jan 12, 2010]
Mar 2012EPA announced that data from the Ramazzini Institute (Ramazzini update) on lymphomas and leukemias would not be used in IRIS assessments. This decision impacted the cancer assessment contained in the December 2009 draft methanol assessment, which was released in January 2010 for external peer review. The December 2009 draft assessment has been archived.

Next Steps

Following the External Peer Review, the final assessment will be published on the IRIS database.

Citation

U.S. EPA. IRIS Toxicological Review of Methanol (External Review Draft; December 2009). U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC, EPA/635/R-09/013, 2010.

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