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Acetone is produced endogenously in the human body, although usually under conditions of stress such as starvation or high levels of exertion. Acetone is also produced synthetically for a range of commercial processes, mostly as a solvent and intermediate in the synthesis of high- value chemicals. Among the most common chemicals that use acetone in the synthetic process are methyl methacrylate, cellulose acetate, methacrylatic acid and higher methacrylates, bisphenol A, methyl isobutyl ketone, and a number of pharmaceutical applications. Acetone is used as a solvent for high-production-volume coatings
and adhesives, and is the primary ingredient in most commercial nail polish removers. It is also listed as a contaminant on more than 560 National Priority List Superfund sites.
Acetone's levels of production and variety of uses, coupled with it's volatility and water solubility, result in a high potential for exposure to acetone.

The draft Toxicological Review for Acetone (ToxR) identifies blood and kidney effects as critical effects, with a reference dose (RfD) of 0.3 mg/kg/d. The draft ToxR provides a new RfD based on a drinking water study to replace
a lower RfD derived from a gavage study. The draft ToxR does not propose a reference concentration (RfC) and proposes a cancer weight-of-evidence determination of class Dnot
classifiable as to human carcinogenicity under the Guidelines for Carcinogen Risk Assessment (1986). Both determinations are consistent with the existing IRIS assessment. The cancer weight of evidence under the Proposed Guidelines for Carcinogen Risk Assessment (1996) is "cannot be determined."

Additional Information

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is hereby providing for public information a draft Toxicological Review and draft IRIS Summary to external peer reviewers for EPA's health assessment of acetone (CAS No. 67-64-1). These documents are provided for public viewing during an external scientific peer review period. While EPA is not soliciting public comments by this action, any scientific views received on the content of the Toxicological Review or IRIS Summary prior to September 14, 2001, will be considered in subsequent drafts.

Please direct any correspondence to:

Michael Broder
IRIS Staff
National Center for Environmental Assessment
(8601D)U.S. EPA
1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW,
Washington, DC 20460

or email to:

Also, please send a record keeping copy to:

National Center for Environmental Assessment

1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW,
Washington, DC 20460
or email to:

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.