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EU RISK ASSESSMENT – DIMETHYL SULPHATE

Toxicity to terrestrial plants

Chromosomal aberrations have been induced by DMS in a variety of vascular plants includingVicia faba, wheat, sunflower, and Norway spruce (EHC, 1985). In another experiment the seeds of three rice cultivars were continuously shaken in solutions containing DMS concentrations of 300, 500 or 1000 mg/l during 12 hours. After this treatment the seeds were washed for 60 min. and allowed to recover in fresh water for 3 hours and sown directly in seed beds. In cultivar No. 1 cytologically abnormal plants were detected at all concentrations of DMS. However, the frequency of aberrant plants decreased with increasing dose: 45.5%, 33.3% and 22.2% for 300, 500 and 1000 mg/l, respectively. In cultivar nr.2 25% aberrant plants were observed at 300 mg/l, 33.3% at 1000 mg/l and no aberrant plants at 500 mg/l. A dose response relationship could not be established. The same was seen in cultivar nr.3 with 16.6% aberrants at 300 mg/l, 0% at 500 mg/l, and 40% at 1000 mg/l. The most common type of abnormality noticed involved the nucleolus; the number of nucleoli varied from two to many and persistent nucleolar bodies of varying sizes were also recorded. Other abnormalities included lagging of chromosomes and bridges with or without fragments (Seetharami Reddi and Reddi, 1985).