The most common alternative to phthalates, acetyl tributyl citrate (ATCB), has shown an endocrine-disrupting potential in Danio rerio and Oryzias latipes, according to an in vivo study. The paper published by the researchers is now likely to raise concern for the use of the substance as a safer alternative for plasticizers. Meanwhile ATBC is already used in a wide range of applications, including PVC.


The integral version of the paper “Developmental toxicity and thyroid hormone-disrupting effects of acetyl

tributyl citrate in zebrafish and Japanese medaka” by Y. Horie, C.K. Yap and H. Okamura (2022), published in the Journal of Hazardous Materials Advances, is available for consultation at this link.

PVC and its additives, which include ATBC, are currently under scrutiny in the EU and ECHA is also investigating the impacts of a possible restriction under REACH. The use of lead, cadmium and some phthalates in PVC is already banned, but there are growing concerns about the risks of alternatives, for which there are generally fewer data available.

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