||Health Effects Research Lab., Research Triangle Park, NC. ;Environmental Health Research and Testing, Inc., Research Triangle Park, NC.;Food and Drug Administration, Rockville, MD.
The use of polymers in plastic and rubber products has generated concern that monomers potentially active in biological systems may be eluted from these substances. The authors have evaluated two such monomers, acrylonitrile and styrene, for the induction of chromosome damage in mice. Butadiene monoxide, a presumed metabolite of a third important monomer, 1,3-butadiene, was also tested. These chemicals were administered as a single ip injection; sister chromatid exchanges and chromosome aberrations were analyzed in bone marrow cells. Acrylonitrile and styrene were largely negative for these endpoints when tested at doses ranging to 60 mg/kg and 1,000 mg/kg, respectively. Butadiene monoxide, which previously has not been tested in a mammalian system, was determined to be a very effective inducer of sister chromatid exchanges and chromosome aberrations. Both endpoints showed a clear dose response and a greater than tenfold increase over control levels at high doses. These studies represent an initial step in the efforts to evaluate genetic risk associated with exposure to common polymeric chemicals.