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Ecotoxicological information

Toxicity to terrestrial plants

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Diethyl ether has a very high volatility and low Log Pow . Consequently, also the Log Koc is low and adsorption to soil is not significant. As a result, uptake of diethyl ether via roots of plants is negligible. Uptake via leaves (of vapours) could be imagined but as a supporting study (Christ, 1996) showed no effect at concentration high as 100 g/m³ at 3h of exposure and exposure assessment showed such concentration in biotic environment to be unrealistic, an additional study on terrestrial plants is not required. The publication of Christ 1996 is scientifically solid and was performed on 7 different plants but had to be rated Klimisch 3 as it did not reference to any guidelines.

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A short-term toxicity study for DEE was conducted in 7 terrestrial plant species (i.e.: Lycopersicon esculentum, Helianthus annuus, Paseolus vulgarus, Beta vulgaris, Glycine maxima Merrill, Tropaeolum majus, and Triticum aestivum) (Christ, 1996). The plants were housed in glass enclosures and exposed to 49 solvent vapours. Visual symptoms of toxicity were recorded, as well as effects on photosynthesis as monitored by water and CO2 production. No specific guideline was followed, and the study was not conducted according to GLP. This study was rated as ‘3’ for reliability according to Klimisch standards. The combined species results indicate that the 3-hour LOECs for inhibition of photosynthesis and for visual signs of toxicity are 100 g/m³ and greater than 100 g/m³, respectively.