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Chemical Sampling Information (CSI)
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General Description

Synonyms: Biformyl; Ethanedial; 1,2-Ethanedione; Oxalaldehyde

OSHA IMIS Code Number: G116

Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) Registry Number: 107-22-2

NIOSH Registry of Toxic Effects of Chemical Substances (RTECS) Identification Number: MD2625000

Chemical Description and Physical Properties:

Yellow prisms which turn white on cooling; soluble in anhydrous solvents.
molecular formula: C2H2O2
molecular weight: 58.04
boiling point: 51°C
melting point: 15°C
vapor pressure: 18 mm Hg @ 20°C
Exposure Limits

American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) Threshold Limit Value (TLV): 0.1 mg/m3, 0.04 ppm TWA; Inhalable fraction and vapor; see Notations/Endnotes section; Sensitizer; Appendix A4 - Not Classifiable as a Human Carcinogen

Health Factors

Potential Symptoms: Irritation of eyes, nose, throat, skin; INGES. ACUTE: Abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting; SKIN ABS.: Sensitizer

Health Effects: Irritation- Eye, nose, Throat, Skin---Mild (HE16); Dermatitis (HE3); Mutagen (HE2)

Affected Organs: Eyes, skin, respiratory system

Notes:

  1. OSHA does not have a PEL for glyoxal, which is considered to be essentially non-volatile in aqueous solution, although occupational exposure could occur via aerosol inhalation or skin contact.
  2. Biomonitoring of exposure has not been reported, as plasma and urine may contain glyoxal from other external (smog, smoke, beer, wine, coffee, fish oil) or internal (metabolic pathways) sources.
  3. Occupational allergy to glyoxal appears to have an increased incidence among employees in healthcare facilities where glyoxal is used in disinfectant solutions.
  4. Glyoxal reacts with amino groups in proteins and DNA, particularly, those in lysine, arginine, and guanine, leading to advanced glycation end-products (AGEs). Lysine- to-lysine and lysine-to-arginine cross-linking of proteins by glyoxal have also been demonstrated, and formation of an adduct of glyoxal in vitro with the antihyperglycemic drug metformin has been reported.
  5. Glyoxal also reacts with glutathione and is metabolized to glyoxalate by intracellular glyoxalases, which are thought to inhibit formation of AGEs.

Date Last Revised: 05/02/2007

Literature Basis:

  • International Chemical Safety Cards (WHO/IPCS/ILO): Glyoxal (40% solution).
  • World Health Organization (Kielhorn, J., Pohlenz-Michel, C., Schmidt, S. and Mangelsdorf, I.): Glyoxal (Concise International Chemical Assessment Document 57), 2004, approx. 61 pp.
  • Aalto-Korte, K., Mkela, E.A., Huttunen, M., Suuronen, K. and Jolanki, R.: Occupational contact allergy to glyoxal. Contact Dermatitis 52(5): 276-281, 2005.
  • Miller, A.G., Smith, D.G., Bhat, M. and Nagaraj, R.H.: Glyoxalase I is critical for human retinal capillary pericyte survival under hyperglycemic conditions. J. Biol. Chem. 281(17): 11864-11871, 2006.
  • Uter, W., Schwanitz, H.J., Lessmann, H. and Schnuch, A.: Glyoxal is an important allergen for (medical care) cleaning staff. Int. J. Hyg. Environ. Health 204(4): 251-253, 2001.
  • Xu, Y. and Chen, X.: Glycolase II, a detoxifying enzyme of glycolysis byproduct methylglyoxal and a target of p63 and p73, is a pro-survival factor of the p53 family. J. Biol. Chem. 281(36): 26702-26713, 2006.

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