REACH Authorization List to Include Endocrine Disrupting Properties for 4 Phthalate Chemicals

The European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) recently provided its recommendation to the European Commission (EC) to modify the REACH Authorization List with the incorporation of endocrine disrupting property information for four phthalate chemicals. Here we present a brief review of endocrine disruptors and discuss the addition of this new information.

About Endocrine Disruptors

Endocrine disrupting chemicals are substances that are able to interact with a body’s endocrine system or processes and yield a wide range of negative effects (e.g., developmental, immunological, neurological, reproductive). They can exert their various effects in several different ways, including:

  • mimicking an endogenous hormone so that the normal cellular response to that hormone occurs, but to the wrong extent or at the wrong time
  • preventing the binding to a cellular receptor of one of the body’s own hormones, thereby preventing the intended response from occurring
  • interfering with blood transport proteins to change natural hormone levels in the bloodstream
  • affecting metabolic processes that can impact the manner in which the body’s own hormones are synthesized, controlled, or broken down

The Chemicals

The four chemicals for which the ECHA has proposed including endocrine disrupting property information are bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate, benzyl butyl phthalate, dibutyl phthalate, and diisobutyl phthalate.

#Substance NameEC NumberCAS Number
1bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP)204-211-0117-81-7
2benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP)201-622-785-68-7
3dibutyl phthalate (DBP)201-557-484-74-2
4diisobutyl phthalate (DIBP)201-553-284-69-5

Source: European Chemicals Agency

Over the past decade, the timeline for these substances has included several key events. Between 2008 and 2009, all four chemicals were identified as substances of very high concern (SVHCs). In 2011 and 2012, they were initially added to the REACH Authorization List because of their reprotoxic properties and classification. In 2014 and 2017, the entries for these chemicals were updated in the REACH Candidate List. Feedback has been received in recent months on a draft version of the recommendation. Most recently, on June 26, 2019, the Member State Committee (MSC) of the ECHA utilized this feedback when adopting its opinion on the issue.

Staying Up to Date

To stay up to date on the ECHA’s recent efforts, including those related to the proposed information addition to the REACH Authorization List, be sure to visit the ToxPlanet website and blog regularly for information on new developments. Also, be sure to contact us to learn more about our information solutions and to register for a Free Trial.