Toxicological Profiles

lab testing toxicological profiles

By congressional mandate, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) produces toxicological profiles for chemical substances found at National Priorities List (NPL) sites. ATSDR ranks these substances based on frequency of occurrence at NPL sites, toxicity, and potential for human exposure. Toxicologists and environmental health scientists at ATSDR develop toxicological profiles from this list of 275 substances.

The toxicological profiles summarize published findings in the scientific literature about chemicals found at NPL sites. The primary users of these documents are health professionals at the federal, regional, and/or state level, and the informed public.

The toxicological profiles include an examination, summary, and interpretation of available toxicological and epidemiologic information on substances. MRLs (minimal risk levels) are also published in ATSDR’s Toxicological Profiles. An MRL is an estimate of the amount of a chemical a person can eat, drink, or breathe each day without a detectable risk to health. MRLs are developed for health effects other than cancer.

To date, ATSDR has published over 184 Toxicological Profiles (14 new or updated in FY 19), and developed 455 Minimum Risk Levels (MRLs), including for these substances in 2019:

  • Molybdenum
  • 3,3-Dichlorobenzidine
  • 2,4-Dichlorophenoxyacetic Acid (2,4-D)
  • Antimony

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Page last reviewed: December 8, 2020