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General Description

  • Synonyms: Destriol; 1,3,5-Estratriene-3-beta,16-alpha, 17-beta-triol; trihydroxyestrin
  • OSHA IMIS Code Number: E321
  • Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) Registry Number: 50-27-1
  • NIOSH Registry of Toxic Effects of Chemical Substances (RTECS) Identification Number: KG8225000
  • Chemical Description and Physical Properties:
    • odorless white crystals
    • molecular formula: C18H24O3
    • molecular weight: 288.39
    • melting point: 282°C

Health Factors

  • Carcinogenic Classification:
  • Potential Symptoms: IN MEN: Possible anorexia, nausea, vomiting, edema; feminization (gynecomastia, erectile dysfunction, hypogonadism, oligospermia); IN WOMEN: Breast tension or pain; cervical hypersecretion; menstrual disorders (menorrhagia, metrorrhagia); nausea, headache; fluid retention, hypertension, leg cramps, vision disturbances; endometriosis pain; possible decrease in milk production by lactating mothers
  • Health Effects: Known human carcinogen (endometrial cancer) (HE2)
  • Affected Organs: Male and female reproductive systems
  • Notes:
    1. Estriol is an endogenous estrogenic hormone and is marketed in some countries as a treatment for climacteric symptoms (e.g., hot flashes, night sweating) in post-menopausal women.
    2. Estriol is synthesized from estradiol and estrone via the enzymes 17-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase and 16α-hydroxylase. The mean production rates of estriol in 13 normal pre-menopausal women during the follicular and luteal phases of their cycle and in four post-menopausal women were reported to be 14, 23, and 11 µg/day, respectively. The mean (±SE) terminal half-life of estriol in plasma was 64±11 minutes.
    3. Affinities of estriol for the two known estrogen receptors, α and β, are only about 1/7 and 1/5, respectively, of the affinities of these receptors for estradiol-17β.
  • Literature Basis:
    • No Author: Estrogens, Steroidal (PDF). Report on Carcinogens (latest edition); U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, National Toxicology Program.
    • No Author: Synapause-E3® 2 mg (tablets). South African Electronic Package Inserts.
    • Kuiper, G.G.J.M., et al.: Comparison of the ligand binding specificity and transcript tissue distribution of estrogen receptors α and β. Endocrinology 138(3): 863-870, 1997.
    • Longcope, C.: Estriol production and metabolism in normal women. J. Steroid Biochem. 20(4B): 959-962, 1984.
    • Loose-Mitchell, D.S. and Stancel, G.M.: Estrogens and Progestins (Chapter 58). In, Goodman & Gilman's The Pharmacological Basis of Therapeutics, 10th Ed. J.G. Hardman, L.E. Limbird and A.G. Gilman, eds. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2001, pp. 1597-1634.
    • Weiderpass, E., et al.: Low-potency oestrogen and risk of endometrial cancer: a case-control study. Lancet 353(9167): 1824-1828, 1999.
  • Date Last Revised: 03/10/2006

Monitoring Methods used by OSHA

Primary Laboratory Sampling/Analytical Method (SLC1):
  • Glass Fiber Filter (37 mm) in 3-piece cassette
  • maximum volume: 240 Liters
  • maximum flow rate: 1.0 L/min
  • maximum time: 240 Minutes
  • current analytical method: High Performance Liquid Chromatography; HPLC/UV at 280nm
  • analytical solvent: Methanol
  • method reference: OSHA Analytical Method (OSHA PV2001)
  • method classification: Partially Validated

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