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Description of key information

One key study neurotoxicity study was identified to determine the neurological effects of inhalation exposure to hexane solvent containing 
between 5 and 80% n-hexane.
Exposure to commercial hexane had no effect on the behavior of rats. The NOAEC for sub-chronic neurological effects is 9000 ppm in rats.

Key value for chemical safety assessment

Effect on neurotoxicity: via inhalation route

Endpoint conclusion
Dose descriptor:
31 680 mg/m³

Additional information

In a key study the neurological effects of inhalation exposure to commercial hexane (53.45% n-hexane) to rats was examined (API, 1990; Klimisch score =2). Rats were exposed to nominal concentrations of 0, 900, 3000, or 9000 ppm for 6 hrs/day, 5 days/week, for 13 weeks. Rats were tested monthly throughout the exposure for hindlimb splay and grip strength. A functional observational battery was also performed regularly. Animals were also examined for clinical signs, body weight, and food consumption. Results showed no effects to behavior or evidence of toxicity. The NOAEC for sub-chronic neurological effects in rats is 9000 ppm (31680 mg/m3).

This study directly informs the DNEL.

Justification for classification or non-classification

Based on the information presented in this study, Hydrocarbons, C5 -C7, n-alkanes, iso-alkanes, cyclics, n-hexane rich is classified R67 (Vapours may cause drowsiness and dizziness) in accordance with Dangerous Substances Directive 67/584/EEC and as STOT Single Exp. 3 (H336: May cause drowsiness or dizziness) in accordance with CLP EU Regulation 1272/2008.