July 7, 2022

European Agency Adds Substance Used in Polymers to Hazardous Chemicals List

The European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) recently announced the addition of the compound N-(hydroxymethyl)acrylamide to its Candidate List of substances of very high concern for authorization. N-(hydroxymethyl)acrylamide is used in polymers as well as in the manufacture of other chemicals and products such as textiles, leather, or fur, according to ECHA’s website. The substance was added to the hazardous chemicals list due to its carcinogenic and mutagenic properties. An “infocard” published by ECHA stresses that N-(hydroxymethyl)acrylamide may also cause an allergic skin reaction; a majority of companies that have submitted data to ECHA about the substance agree that it is skin sensitizing, the agency explains. The infocard also provides information related to hazard classification and labeling and other properties of concern.

The Candidate List now contains 224 substances. Identifying a chemical as a substance of very high concern and including it in the Candidate List is the first step of the authorization procedure under REACH, the European Union’s Regulation on Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals.

NIOSH’s Registry of Toxic Effects of Chemical Substances (RTECS), which contains toxicity data obtained from open scientific literature, has a page for N-(hydroxymethyl)acrylamide. Users of RTECS can find data on primary irritation, mutagenic effects, reproductive effects, tumorigenic effects, acute toxicity, and other multiple dose toxicity.

Related: A feature article published in the November 2019 issue of The Synergist focuses on dermal sensitizers.