Agent Name

Maleic anhydride

CAS Number

108-31-6

Formula

C4-H2-O3

Major Category

Plastics & Rubber

Synonyms

cis-Butenedioic anhydride; 2,5-Furanedione; Maleic acid anhydride; Toxilic anhydride; [NIOSH]

Category

Acid Anhydrides, Cyclic

Description

Colorless needles, white lumps, or pellets with an irritating, choking odor; [NIOSH] Deliquescent; [CHEMINFO]

Sources/Uses

Used in Diel-Alder syntheses; copolymerization reactions; and manufacturing of alkyd-type resins, dye intermediates, pharmaceuticals, and pesticides (Malathion). [Merck Index] Other uses are coatings, epoxies, and paper sizing resins; [ACGIH]

Comments

Causes respiratory distress and lung hemorrhage in rats inhaling 86 mg/m3 six hours/day, five days/week for four weeks; Causes severe corneal ulcerations after instillation into rabbit eyes; A dermal sensitizer based on animal testing and limited data in humans; [ACGIH] Solid form causes first degree burns on short exposure; [CHRIS] Maleic anhydride is a skin irritant. [Quick CPC] Maleic anhydride is a severe eye irritant; [HSDB] Causes occupational asthma: a 34 year old male developed asthma 1 month after starting work in a plant manufacturing polyurethane products. The patient showed a dual asthmatic response after specific inhalation challenge with maleic anhydride. [Reference #1] Maleic anhydride can cause contact urticaria. [Occupational allergic contact urticaria from maleic anhydride. Kanerva L, et al. Contact Dermatitis. 2000 Mar;42(3):170-2. No abstract available.] Danger of skin and airway sensitization; [MAK] See "ACID ANHYDRIDES."

Reference Link

Occupational asthma due to maleic anhydride

Exposure Assessment
Skin Designation (ACGIH)

No

TLV (ACGIH)

0.01 mg/m3, Inhalable fraction and vapor

PEL (OSHA)

1 mg/m3

MAK

0.41 mg/m3

IDLH (NIOSH)

10 mg/m3

Excerpts from Documentation for IDLHs

Human data: In volunteers, 6 to 8 mg/m3 caused nasal irritation within 1 minute and ocular irritation after 15 to 20 minutes [Gervais 1967]. In another study, concentrations of 10 mg/m3 and higher were found to be extremely irritating [IHFA 1969].

Vapor Pressure

0.2 mm Hg

Odor Threshold Low

0.25 mg/m3

Odor Threshold High

0.32 mg/m3

Explanatory Notes

Odor threshold from AIHA;

Reference Link

ICSC: Maleic anhydride

Flammability (NFPA)

1: Must be preheated

Adverse Effects
Skin Sensitizer

Yes

Asthma

Yes

Toxic Pneumonitis

Yes

Dermatotoxin

Skin Burns

ACGIH Carcinogen

Not Classifiable

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:

Processes

Industrial Processes with risk of exposure: