Mutagens

Mutagens-alasivu

Mutagens are substances capable of causing hereditary mutations in the germ cells.

The following substances are listed among mutagens:

  • benzene
  • epichlorohydrin
  • ethylene oxide
  • vinyl chloride.

Mutations are permanent changes to the amount or structure of genetic material. In the human body, mutations occur all the time during cell division. Mutagens can, however, accelerate the occurrence of mutations and cause damage to the DNA. Germ cell mutations may lead to hereditary diseases. While not all mutagens are also capable of causing cancer, many of them are. Further information is available on page Risk of cancer.

Employer’s reporting obligations

It is the employer’s duty to report all carcinogenic substances and methods along with the information of employees exposed to mutagens at work to the Finnish register of workers exposed to carcinogens (the ASA Register). Further information is available on page Register of exposed workers.

Mutagens: classification and labelling

Mutagenic substances and mixtures can be identified by the fact that they are classified as category 1A or 1B mutagens under the Classification, Labelling and Packaging (CLP) Regulation. These substances and mixtures are also labelled with a hazard statement (H) and a hazard pictogram:

CLP Regulation
(EC) No 1272/2008

H340

May cause genetic defects

Danger

Hazard pictogram compliant with the CLP Regulation indicating that the substance may cause genetic defects.

 

Substances and mixtures suspected of causing genetic defects are classified as category 2 mutagens under the CLP Regulation. They are also labelled with a hazard statement (H) and a hazard pictogram:

CLP Regulation
(EC) No 1272/2008

H341

Suspected of causing genetic defects

Warning

Hazard symbol for mutagenic substances in accordance with the CLP Regulation.