Toxic Influence

Chemicals on the EPA's list

Wednesday, December 22nd, 2010 

Adapted from EPA’s list of chemicals with Substantial Evidence of Developmental Neurotoxicity
This list omits most medicines, drugs like LSD and cocaine, and caffeine, but includes food additives.

  • 2-ethoxyethyl Acetate — a solvent, used as a coating for wood, metal and other materials; sometimes found in cosmetics
  • Acibenzolar-S methyl — a fungicide
  • Acrylamide — a chemical that is produced naturally in certain foods when they are cooked at high temperatures. It is also manufactured industrially for use in the production of polyacrylamide gels, which are used for various purposes, including the treatment of drinking-water and wastewater; and found in cigarette smoke.
  • Aldicarb — a pesticide
  • Allethrin — a pesticide
  • Aluminum (lactate) — used in lotions to treat very dry skin 
  • Aminopterin — a chemical originally developed for use in cancer treatment.
  • Arsenic — a semimetallic element, which enters drinking water supplies from natural deposits in the earth or from agricultural and industrial practices.
  • Aspartame — an artificial sweetener
  • Benomyl — a fungicide
  • Benzene — a volatile organic chemical formed through natural processes, such as volcanoes and forest fires. It is also formed from industrial processes, and is used to make plastics, rubber, resins and synthetic fabrics like nylon and polyester. Benzene is also a natural part of crude oil, gasoline and cigarette smoke.
  • Bioallethrin (s-bioallethrin) — a pesticide
  • Bis(tri-n-butyltin)oxide — a biocide
  • Bisphenol A — this chemical is the main ingredient in polycarbonate plastic, used to make water bottles, baby bottles and food storage and heating trays; and epoxy resin, which is used in the lining of most food and beverage cans. Also known as BPA.
  • Butylated Hydroxy Anisole  — a food additive, better known as BHA.
  • Butylated hydroxytoluene — - (BHT) is a toluene-based ingredient used as a preservative in food and personal care products.
  • Cadmium — a natural element in the earth’s crust. It is found in foods, and people can be exposed from smoking cigarettes or breathing cigarette smoke, workplace, water or industrial facilities that release it into the air.
  • Carbaryl — an insecticide
  • Carbon monoxide — an odorless and colorless toxic gas
  • Chlordecone — an insecticide
  • Chlorine dioxide — a chemical mostly used to disinfect water
  • Chlorpyrifos — an insecticide
  • Cypermethrin — an insecticide
  • DEET — a common ingredient in insect repellents
  • Deltamethrin — an insecticide
  • Diazinon — a pesticide
  • Dieldrin — an insecticide no longer produced in the U.S., but still found in the environment.
  • Ethanol — grain alcohol, produced from crops such as corn, used as a fuel additive, solvent and other purposes.
  • Ethylene thiourea — an industrial chemical mostly used to make rubber products, but also in making fungicides and rodenticides.
  • Fluazinam — a fungicide
  • Heptachlor — a non-agricultural insectide; use is now very limited.
  • Hexachlorobenzene — can be formed as a byproduct during the manufacture of chemicals used as solvents, other chlorine-containing compounds and pesticides. Small amounts of hexachlorobenzene can also be produced during combustion processes such as burning of city wastes. Currently, the substance is not used commercially in the United States.
  • Hexachlorophene — a disinfectant
  • Lead — This heavy metal occurs naturally in the earth's crust. It was formerly used as a gasoline additive and was also commonly added to paint. Lead pipes may also contaminate drinking water. Coal-fired power plants and other industrial uses release lead particles into the air.
  • Lindane — a chemical used to treat scabies and lice
  • Maneb — a fungicide
  • Methanol — also known as wood alcohol, an alternative fuel, and other uses
  • Methylparathion — a pesticide
  • Monosodium Glutamate — a flavor enhancer, used as a food additive
  • Nicotine — the addictive drug in tobacco
  • Methoxyethanol, 2 — an organic compound used mainly as a solvent
  • Methylmercury — a form of mercury found in contaminated freshwater and salt water fish. It gets into the air when coal, oil or wood are burned as fuel, or when mercury-contaminated wastes are incinerated
  • Ozone — a gas that occurs both in the earth’s upper atmosphere and at ground level
  • Paraquat — an herbicide
  • Parathion (ethyl) — an insecticide
  • PBDEs — Polybrominated diphenyl ethers, called PBDEs, are used as flame retardants, among other purposes. Some types of PBDEs have been banned, or phased out, but industry has developed others to replace them.
  • PCBs (generic) — Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are a group of chemicals that were used as insulation in electrical transformers, and for other industrial purposes. They are no longer manufactured but have persisted in the environment.
  • Permethrin — an insecticide
  • Phthalate, di-(2-ethylhexyl) — This phthalate, commonly referred to as DEHP, is found in many plastic products.
  • Tebuconazole — a fungicide
  • Toluene — a common solvent, found in many consumer goods, among them: floor polish, moisturing cream, lubricating oils, paint thinners.
  • Tributyltin chloride — Man-made organic substances containing the metal tin. They are used as pesticides and biocides in marine antifouling paints and in wood preservatives.
  • Trichlorfon — an insecticide
  • Trichloroethylene — used as a solvent to clean metal parts and for other industrial processes, often found as a water contaminant.

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Sheila Kaplan