ATSDR - Toxic Substances - Hexachlorobenzene
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Hexachlorobenzene

CAS ID #: 118-74-1

Affected Organ Systems: Developmental (effects during periods when organs are developing) , Hepatic (Liver), Reproductive (Producing Children)

Cancer Effects: Reasonably Anticipated to be a Human Carcinogen

Chemical Classification: Pesticides (chemicals used for killing pests, such as rodents, insects, or plants)

Summary: Hexachlorobenzene was widely used as a pesticide to protect the seeds of onions and sorghum, wheat, and other grains against fungus until 1965. It was also used to make fireworks, ammunition, and synthetic rubber. Currently, there are no commercial uses of hexachlorobenzene in the United States. Hexachlorobenzene is a white crystalline solid that is not very soluble in water. It does not occur naturally in the environment. It is formed as a by-product while making other chemicals, in the waste streams of chloralkali and wood-preserving plants, and when burning municipal waste.

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