WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION FOOD AND AGRICULTURE ORGANIZATION ORGANISATION MONDIALE DE LA SANTE ORGANISATION POUR L'ALIMENTATION ET L'AGRICULTURE VBC/DS/79.41 ORIGINAL: ENGLISH DATA SHEETS ON PESTICIDES No. 41 April 1979 ALDRIN It must be noted that the issue of a Data Sheet for a particular pesticide does not imply endorsement of the pesticide by WHO or FAO for any particular use, or exclude its use for other purposes not stated. While the information provided is believed to be accurate according to data available at the time when the sheet was compiled, neither WHO nor FAO are responsible for any errors or omissions, or any consequences therefrom. The issue of this document does Ce document ne constitue pas une not constitute formal publication. Il ne doit faire publication. It should not be l'objet d'aucun compte rendu ou reviewed, abstracted or quoted résumé ni d'aucune citation sans without the agreement of the l'autorisation de l'Organisation Food and Agriculture des Nations Unies pour Organization of the United l'Alimentation et l'Agriculture Nations or of the World Health ou de l'Organisation Mondiale de Organization. la Santé. CLASSIFICATION: Primary use: Insecticide Secondary use: Acaricide Chemical group: Organochlorine Compound Date issued: April 1979 1. GENERAL INFORMATION 1.1 COMMON NAME: Aldrin (ISO) 1.1.1 Identity: A material containing not less than 95% of 1,2,3,4,10,10-hexachloro, 1,4,4a, 5,8,8a-hexahydro-exo-1,4-endo-5,8-dimethanonaphthalene (HHDN) In the convention of the American Chemical Society, the configuration is endo-exo. 1.1.2 Synonyms: OMS-194 Compound 118 Local synonyms: 1.2 SYNOPSIS An organochlorine pesticide of high mammalian toxicity which accumulates in the tissues of man and animals. 1.3 SELECTED PROPERTIES 1.3.1 Physical characteristics HHDN is a white, crystalline, odourless, solid, m.p. 104 to 104.5°C. Technical aldrin is a tan to dare brown solid, melting range 49 to 60°C. 1.3.2 Solubility Practically insoluble in water (0.027 mg/litre at 25-29°C). Moderately soluble in petroleum oil. Readily soluble in acetone, benzene and xylene. 1.3.3 Stability Stable to heat, alkali and to mild acids; oxidizing agents and strong acids attack the unchlorinated ring. It can also be corrosive. 1.3.4 Vapour pressure 2.31 x 10-5 mmHg at 20°C. 1.4 AGRICULTURE, HORTICULTURE AND FORESTRY 1.4.1 Common formulations Emulsifiable concentrates 240-480 g/litre; epichlorhydrin added to delay corrosion and inhibit dehydrochlorination. Wettable powders 40-70% - urea added to prevent dehydrochlorination by certain carriers. Dysts 2.5-5%. Seed dressings and granules. 1.4.2 Pests mainly controlled Effective against a wide range of insect species, notably cabbage root fly, hop root, weevil, leatherjackets, narcissus bulb fly, wireworm and other soil insects, strawberry beetle and grasshoppers. 1.4.3 Use pattern Used against pests which occur in soil and attack plants below ground level or at ground level. Major crops treated are maize, sorghum, small grain, cereals, potatoes, beet vegetables, tobacco, cotton and sugar cane. 1.4.4 Unintended effects No information. 1.5 PUBLIC HEALTH PROGRAMME No recommended use. 1.6 HOUSEHOLD USE Aldrin is too toxic for household use. 2. TOXICOLOGY AND RISKS 2.1 TOXICOLOGY - MAMMALS 2.1.1 Absorption route Absorbed by the intact skin as well as by inhalation and from the gastrointestinal tract. Organic solvents such as xylene and edible and other vegetable oils enhance the rate of absorption of the toxicant into the body. 2.1.2 Mode of action Central nervous system stimulant producing convulsions. 2.1.3 Excretion products After absorption aldrin is rapidly epoxidized to dieldrin (Data Sheet No. 17) and only for a short time may it be demonstrable in blood or body fat. Dieldrin is stored in body tissues, particularly body fat and is slowly excreted. It is mainly excreted as hydrophilic metabolites in the bile and faeces. A few minor metabolites are also excreted in the urine. 2.1.4 Toxicity, single dose Oral: LD50 rat (M): 38-54 mg/kg LD50 rat (F): 46-67 mg/kg LD50 dog: 65-95 mg/kg Dermal: LD50 rat: 98 mg/kg LD50 rabbit: 600-1250 mg/kg 2.1.5 Toxicity, repeated doses Oral: See dietary studies. Inhalation: No information. Dermal: Dry aldrin was applied daily to the skin of rabbits for 2 hours on each of 50 days over a period of 10 weeks. The minimum lethal doses were 35-123 mg/kg. Cumulation of compound: Aldrin is stored as dieldrin in body tissues; its chronic toxicity is related to the level of dieldrin in the body; the level of dieldrin in adipose tissue is related to intake and reaches a plateau level if intake is steady. 2.1.6 Dietary studies Short-term: Groups of 12 rats (6 males and 6 females) were fed diets containing 0.5, 2.5, 75, 150 mg aldrin/kg diet for three months. The liver weight was increased at the two higher dosages and the mortality rate was increased at the 150 mg/kg level only. Dogs were more susceptible than rats to the toxic effects of aldrin. Diets that contained aldrin in concentrations of 10, 25 or 50 mg/kg fed 5 or 6 days of each week, induced fatalities in mongrel dogs after periods of feeding ranging from several days to three months. Groups of four beagle dogs fed dietary concentrations of 1.0 and 3.0 mg/kg aldrin survived 15.6 months. Increased liver weights were observed at the dietary levels of 3.0 mg/kg aldrin. Minor liver cell changes were seen in males and females fed aldrin at 3.0 mg/kg diet. Groups of three rabbits were given dosages of aldrin of 0.625, 1.25, 2.5, 5.0 and 10.0 mg/kg body weight per day, i.e. equivalent to approximately 20.6, 82.5, 165 and 330 mg/kg diet. There were no observable effects at the 1.25 and 0.625 levels. Dosages of 2.5 mg/kg body weight and above were fatal. Long-term: When fed for two years to rats (in groups of 40 males and 40 females) at concentrations of 2.5, 12.5 or 25.0 mg/kg diet, aldrin showed no significant effect on mortality of rat or growth rate. Non-specific changes in hepatic cells were recorded in all experimental groups. In another two-year study, groups of 12 male and 12 female rats were fed concentrations of 0.5, 2, 10, 50, 100 and 150 mg aldrin/kg diet. Survival was markedly decreased among rats fed 50 mg/kg and above. Histopathological changes in the liver were observed at 10 mg/kg. The 0.5 mg/kg level was assumed to be the lowest showing an effect. Groups of mongrel dogs (12 males and 12 females) were fed aldrin at daily dosages of 0.2, 0.5, 1.0, 2.0, 5.0 and 10.0 mg/kg diet for up to two years. Dogs fed 0.5 mg/kg and higher dosages showed gross toxic effects, including loss of weight and convulsions and died progressively earlier with increasing dose levels. Histopathological changes were seen in the liver, kidney and bone marrow of the dogs fed 1.0 mg/kg. No effect, either gross or microscopic was seen in dogs receiving 0.2 mg/kg. 2.1.7 Supplementary studies of toxicity Carcinogenicity: Since aldrin is converted to dieldrin all chronic effects are due to dieldrin. Neither aldrin nor dieldrin have produced malignant tumours in rats, dogs and monkeys at tolerated dose levels in long-term feeding studies. In mice, however, long-term feeding studies have shown the development of liver tumours, some of which may present malignant characteristics. The incidence of liver tumours shows a direct relationship to the level of intake. Reproduction studies, including teratology: Rats fed aldrin or dieldrin at concentrations of 2.5, 12.5 and 25.0 mg/kg diet over three consecutive generations, each generation being bred twice, showed no significant difference from controls in reproductive capacity. Increased litter mortality was noted, especially in the group receiving 12.5 and 25.0 mg/kg. No teratogenic effects were found. 2.1.8 Modification of toxicity No information. 2.2 TOXICOLOGY - MAN 2.2.1 Absorption See 2.1.1. The greatest hazard is by absorption through the intact skin. 2.2.2 Dangerous doses Single: Persons exposed to oral doses which exceed 10 mg/kg body weight frequently become acutely ill. The lethal dose of aldrin for an adult man is estimated to be about 5 g. Repeated: From observations on occupationally exposed workers it has been concluded that intoxication due to repeated or prolonged absorption of aldrin and dieldrin is not observed when the levels of dieldrin in the blood are below 0.2 mg. 2.2.3 Observations of occupationally exposed workers Extensive observations on plant workers have been conducted. No fatal poisoning in aldrin manufacture has been reported. Aldrin and dieldrin exposed workers, with blood levels of 0.105 mg dieldrin, showed no sign of enzyme induction. This no-effect level has been calculated to be approximately equivalent to a daily intake of at least 1224 mg/man/day. 2.2.4 Observations on exposure of the general population: Total diet studies in two countries and calculations from dieldrin levels in adipose tissues and also in blood, demonstrate an average combined aldrin/dieldrin intake of 7 µg/man (equivalent to 0.1 µg/kg/day). This intake corresponds to a blood level of 600 mg. 2.2.5 Observations on volunteers See Data Sheet No. 17. 2.2.6 Reported mishaps There have been no cases of mass poisoning by aldrin or dieldrin. 2.3 TOXICITY TO NON-MAMMALIAN SPECIES 2.3.1 Fish Varies in severity from harmful to highly toxic. 2.3.2 Birds Toxic but toxicity varies considerably. 2.3.3 Other species Toxic to wildlife in general. 3. FOR REGULATORY AUTHORITIES - RECOMMENDATIONS OF REGULATIONS OF COMPOUND 3.1 RECOMMENDED RESTRICTIONS ON AVAILABILITY (for definition of categories, see introduction) Liquid formulations over 25%, category 3; liquid formulations above 2.5%, category 4; solid formulations above 10%, category 4, all other formulations, category 5. 3.2 TRANSPORTATION AND STORAGE All formulations; Categories 3 and 4, United Nations Classification 6.1 Should be transported or stored in clearly labelled rigid and leakproof containers, under lock and key, secure from access by unauthorized persons and children. No food or drink should be stored in the same compartment. Formulations, Category 5 - Should be stored in clearly labelled leakproof containers, out of reach of children, away from food and drink. 3.3 HANDLING All protective clothing (see part 4) should be used by all handling of the compound. Adequate washing facilities should be available at all times during handling and should be close to the site of handling. Eating and drinking and smoking should be prohibited during handling and before washing after handling. Formulations, Category 5 - No facilities other than those needed for the handling of any chemical need be required. 3.4 DISPOSAL AND/OR DECONTAMINATION OF CONTAINER All formulations - Containers must either be burned or crushed and buried below topsoil. Care must be taken to avoid subsequent contamination of water sources. Decontamination of containers in order to use them for other purposes should not be permitted. 3.5 SELECTION, TRAINING AND MEDICAL SUPERVISION OF WORKERS All formulations Categories 3 and 4 - Pre-employment medical examination of workers and regular special examination advisable. Special account should be taken of the workers' mental ability to comprehend and follow instructions. Training of workers in techniques to avoid contact essential. Formulation, Category 5 - Warning of workers to minimize contact essential. 3.6 ADDITIONAL REGULATIONS RECOMMENDED IF DISTRIBUTED BY AIRCRAFT All formulations - Pilots and loaders should have special training in application methods and recognition of early symptoms of poisoning. Use of flagmen not recommended. Flagmen, if used, should wear overalls and be located well away from the dropping zone. 3.7 LABELLING All formulations, Categories 3 and 4 - Minimum cautionary statement Aldrin is a toxic substance and may cause convulsions. It is poisonous if swallowed. It may be absorbed through the skin or inhaled as dusts or mists. Avoid skin contact; wear hand protection and clean protective clothing while using the material. Wash thoroughly with soap and water after using. Keep the material out of reach of children and well away from foodstuffs, animal feed and their containers. Formulation; Category 5 - Minimum cautionary statement - This formulation contains aldrin, a toxic substance which is poisonous if swallowed. Keep the material out of reach of children and well away from foodstuffs, animal feed and their containers. 3.8 RESIDUES IN FOOD Maximum residue limits for aldrin have been recommended by the Joint FAO/WHO Meeting on Pesticide Residues. These are subject to change at annual reviews. 4. PREVENTION OF POISONING IN MEN AND EMERGENCY AID 4.1 PRECAUTIONS IN USE 4.1.1 General Aldrin is an organochlorine pesticide of high mammalian toxicity which penetrates the intact skin; it may also be absorbed by inhalation and by the gastrointestinal tract. Concentrated formulations should be handled by trained personnel wearing protective clothing. 4.1.2 Manufacture and formulation T.L.V.; (ACGIH) 0.25 mg/m3, (USSR) 0.01 mg/m3. Closed systems and forced ventilation may be required to reduce as much as possible the exposure of workers to the chemical. 4.1.3 Mixers and applicators When opening the container and when mixing, protective impermeable boots, clean overalls, gloves and respirators should be worn. Mixing, if not mechanical, should always be carried out with a paddle of appropriate length. The applicator should avoid working in spray mist and avoid contact with the mouth. Particular care is needed when equipment is being washed after use. All protective clothing should be washed immediately after use, including the insides of gloves. Splashes must be washed immediately from the skin or eyes with large quantities of water. Before eating, drinking or smoking, hands and other exposed skin should be washed. Although not usually used on tall crops, if these are sprayed or during aerial applications, a face mask should be worn as well as an impermeable hat, overall, boots and gloves. The applicator should avoid working in spray mist and avoid contact with the mouth. Particular care is needed when equipment is being washed after use. All protective clothing should be washed immediately after use, including the insides of gloves. 4.1.4 Other associated workers (including flagmen in aerial operations) Persons exposed to aldrin and associated with its application should wear protective clothing and observe the precautions described above in 4.1.3 under "Mixers and applicators". 4.1.5 Other populations likely to be affected With good agricultural practice, and subject to 4.2 below, other populations should not be exposed to hazardous amounts of aldrin. Total diet studies in two countries have demonstrated that the intake of aldrin and dieldrin is well below the hazard level. Detectable levels of dieldrin are found in the fat of the general population, some of which may be due to absorption of aldrin. 4.2 ENTRY OF PERSONS INTO TREATED AREAS Unprotected persons should be kept out of treated areas for at least one day. 4.3 DECONTAMINATION OF SPILLAGE AND CONTAINERS Residues in containers should be emptied in a diluted form into a deep pit taking care to avoid contamination of ground waters. Decontamination of containers in order to use them for other purposes should not be permitted. Spillage should be removed as much as possible into a deep dry pit and the remainder washed away with large quantities of water. 4.4 EMERGENCY AID 4.4.1 Early symptoms of poisoning Early symptoms of poisoning are headache, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, general malaise, and possibly insomnia. Later, convulsions may occur. 4.4.2 Treatment before person is seen by a physician, if these symptoms appear following exposure The person should stop work immediately; remove contaminated clothing and wash the affected skin with soap and water if available, and flush the area with large quantities of water. If swallowed, vomiting should be induced, if the person is conscious. 5. FOR MEDICAL AND LABORATORY PERSONNEL 5.1 MEDICAL DIAGNOSIS AND TREATMENT IN CASES OF POISONING General information - An organochlorine pesticide of high toxicity which may be absorbed through the intact skin as well as by inhalation and from the gastrointestinal tract. It is rapidly epoxidized to dieldrin in the human body. The made of action is similar to that of dieldrin and consists of central nervous system stimulation producing epileptiform convulsions. It is stored in body tissues, particularly in the fat, as dieldrin. The half-life of dieldrin calculated from the decrease in blood levels after cessation of exposure is 0.73 years. 5.1.2 Symptoms and signs Early symptoms of acute poisoning include headache, nausea, vomiting, general malaise and dizziness. With more severe poisoning, clonic and tonic convulsions occur with or without the symptoms just mentioned. Coma may or may not follow the convulsions. Hyperexcitability and hyperirritability are common findings. The clinical syndrome of intoxication is indistinguishable from epilepsy and therefore history of exposure is important. 5.1.3 Laboratory No symptoms have ever been observed when the blood level of aldrin/ dieldrin is 0.2 mg/litre or below levels above this may therefore be indicative of poisoning. The presence of aldrin metabolites in the urine also indicates absorption. The electroencephalogrammay show specific changes: bilateral synchronous spikes, spike and wave complexes and slow theta waves. 5.1.4 Treatment If the pesticide has been ingested, gastric lavage should be performed with 2-4 litres of tap water followed by saline purgatives (30 g sodium sulfate in 250 ml of water). Barbiturates (preferably phenobarbitone or pentobarbitone) or diazepam should be given IM or IV in sufficient dosage to control restlessness or convulsions. Mechanical respiratory assistance with oxygen may be required. Calcium gluconate, 10% in 10 ml should be injected 4 hourly. Contraindications are oily purgatives, epinephrine and other adrenergic drugs and central stimulants of all kinds. It is advisable to continue large doses of phenobarbitone over a longer period since it may prevent a post-convulsive syndrome of loss of appetite and weight loss and by stimulating the oxydative enzyme system of the liver, increases the rate of excretion. 5.1.5 Prognosis If the convulsions are survived, the chances of complete recovery are good. However, in very severe cases, there is a possibility of permanent brain damage secondary to continued anoxia resulting from prolonged convulsions. 5.1.6 References of previous reported cases The following reference gives methods of treatment used in cases of poisoning: Zavon, M. R. (1964) J. Amer. Med. Assoc., 190, 595-596. See also, Hayes, W. J. jr (1963) Clinical handbook on economic poisons, Environmental Protection Agency, p. 49, 50, 66. 5.2 SURVEILLANCE TESTS There are no rapid methods for determining the extent of absorption of aldrin prior to the appearance of symptoms. Levels of aldrin/dieldrin in blood and the presence of aldrin metabolites in urine have been used in surveillance tests. Workers continuously exposed can be satisfactorily monitored by the regular determination of the dieldrin level in the blood which, to prevent intoxication, should not exceed 0.2 µg/ml. 5.3 LABORATORY METHODS 5.3.1 Detection and assay of compound References only are given. Due to rapid epoxidation of aldrin to dieldrin in the liver, only dieldrin needs to be determined in the blood. Determination of dieldrin in blood is carried out by gas chromatography, using an electrocapture detector as described by Richardson et al. (1967). Levels of dieldrin in urine have also been measured by Cueto et al. (1967). A number of multi-detection systems are available for the detection and determination of residues of aldrin in food, along with residues of other compounds. The methods are sensitive to about 0.002 ppm of aldrin in milk and 0.02 ppm in most other foods. Anon. (1966), Porter (1972). 5.3.2 Other tests in cases of poisoning Electroencephalographic changes after poisoning by cyclodiene compounds are described by Hogendam, I. (1962).
See Also: Aldrin (IARC Summary & Evaluation, Supplement 7, 1987) Aldrin (IARC Summary & Evaluation, Volume 5, 1974) Aldrin (PIM 573) Aldrin and Dieldrin (EHC 91, 1989)