Acrylamide

CAS RN:79-06-1

Exposure Summary

Acrylamide's production and use in the production of polyacrylamide and other polymers, in the synthesis of dyes and other compounds, pulp and paper production and in the oil industry as a flow control agent to enhance oil production from wells may result in its release to the environment through various waste streams. Residual acrylamide monomer in polyacrylamide products is a potential source of environmental release. Acrylamide has been detected in tobacco smoke. Acrylamide is formed in various foods cooked at normal temperatures during baking, frying and grilling. If released to air, a vapor pressure of 0.00675 mm Hg at 25 deg C indicates acrylamide will exist solely as a vapor in the ambient atmosphere. Vapor-phase acrylamide will be degraded in the atmosphere by reaction with photochemically-produced hydroxyl radicals and by reaction with ozone; the half-lives for these reactions in air are estimated to be 1.4 and 6.5 days respectively. Acrylamide does not absorb at wavelengths >290 nm and, therefore, is not expected to be susceptible to direct photolysis by sunlight. If released to soil, acrylamide is expected to have very high to high mobility based upon an experimental Koc of 50. Volatilization from moist soil surfaces is not expected to be an important fate process based upon an estimated Henry's Law constant of 1.7X10-9 atm-cu m/mole. Volatilization from dry soil surfaces is not expected based on acrylamide's vapor pressure. Acrylamide is susceptible to biodegradation in soil and water. Utilizing the Japanese MITI and OECD 301D Closed Bottle tests, 70 and 98.1% of the Theoretical BOD was reached in 4 weeks, respectively, indicating that biodegradation may be an important environmental fate process in soil and water. If released into water, acrylamide is not expected to adsorb to suspended solids and sediment based upon the Koc. In a river die-away test, 90% of acrylamide disappeared in approximately 150 hours. Volatilization from water surfaces is not expected to be an important fate process based upon this compound's Henry's Law constant. A BCF of 1 for fingerling rainbow trout, suggests the potential for bioconcentration in aquatic organisms is low. The hydrolysis half-life of acrylamide has been reported as >38 yrs indicating that hydrolysis is not expected to be an important environmental fate process under environmental conditions (pH 5 to 9). Occupational exposure to acrylamide may occur through inhalation and dermal contact with this compound at workplaces where acrylamide is produced or used. The general population may be exposed to acrylamide via inhalation of tobacco smoke, ingestion of food and drinking water and dermal contact with polyacrylamide products which may contain acrylamide residuals. (SRC)
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