Agent Name

Dimethylmercury

CAS Number

593-74-8

Formula

C2-H6-Hg

Major Category

Metals

Synonyms

Methylmercury; [ChemIDplus] Mercury dimethyl; [Olson, p. 622] Dimethyl mercury; [ICSC]

Category

Metals, Organic Compounds

Description

Clear liquid with a mild sweet odor; [Olson, p. 622] Flammable liquid, insoluble in water; [Sullivan, p. 979]

Sources/Uses

Used as a chemical reagent; Along with monomethyl mercury, it is found as an environmental contaminant in birds and fish. [Merck Index]

Comments

1-2 drops on a latex glove caused CNS damage (ataxia, dysarthria, auditory and visual effects) and death of a research chemist; [Olson, p. 622] A skin, eye, and respiratory tract irritant; May cause severe effects on the CNS; A reproductive toxin; [ICSC] The methyl mercury ion (CH3Hg+) is conjugated with thiol-containing molecules in the body and is not found free and unbound. [Nordberg, p. 1046] Symptoms of chronic methylmercury poisoning (Minamata disease) include incoordination, paralysis, and abnormal reflexes. [Sullivan, p. 980] See "Mercury, alkyl compounds" and linked occupational diseases.

Exposure Assessment
Skin Designation (ACGIH)

Yes

Bioaccumulates

Yes

TLV (ACGIH)

0.01 mg/m3, as Hg

STEL (ACGIH)

0.03 mg/m3, as Hg

PEL (OSHA)

0.01 mg/m3, Ceiling(OSHA) = 0.04 mg/m3, as Hg

IDLH (NIOSH)

2 mg/m3, as Hg

Vapor Pressure

62.3 mm Hg

Adverse Effects
Neurotoxin

Other CNS Neurotoxin

Nephrotoxin

Yes

Reproductive Toxin

Yes

IARC Carcinogen

Possible Carcinogen

Links to Other NLM Databases
Health Studies

Human Health Effects from Hazardous Substances Data Bank:

Toxicity Information

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Chemical Information

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Biomedical References

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Related Information in HazMap
Diseases

Occupational diseases associated with exposure to this agent: