Diethyl phthalate (DEP) is a phthalate ester, namely the diethyl ester of phthalic acid. It is a clear substance that is liquid at room temperature and is only slightly denser than liquid water. It has a faint, disagreeable odor and can be transferred from the plastics that contain it.〔(ATSDR ToxFAQ for Diethyl phthalate )〕 When burned, DEP produces toxic gases.〔(ICSC:NENG0258 (International Chemical Safety Card for 1,2-Benzenedicarboxylic acid diethyl ester) )〕
Since the compound is a suitable solvent for many organic molecules, it is often used to bind cosmetics and fragrances. Other industrial uses include plasticizers, detergent bases and aerosol sprays. Because of the frequent dermal exposure of humans to the chemical, the question of toxicity is crucial. Several studies suggest that DEP can cause damage to the nervous system as well as to the reproductive organs in males and females.
Due to their use as plasticizers, diethyl phthalates are ubiquitous in the environment, especially near places of production and use. Biodegradation through microbially-mediated processes can result in products that can potentially harm microorganisms.
There is also general evidence of widespread human exposure.
Non-occupational exposure results from the diet, for example phthalate-coated medicines and nutritional supplements, and through consumer products.〔 High occupational exposure was observed in workers directly manufacturing plasticizers.
Studies suggest a high correlation between air and urine sample concentrations of short side-chain phthalates such as DEP, making inhalation an important route of exposure.〔〔
抄文引用元・出典: フリー百科事典『 ウィキペディア（Wikipedia）』