In an article published on May 9, 2018 by regulatory news provider Chemical Watch, editor Andrew Turley informed that the World Health Organization’s (WHO) International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) concluded that both styrene (CAS 100-42-5) and styrene-6,8-oxide (CAS 96-09-3) are “probably carcinogenic to humans.” A news article in the peer-reviewed journal The Lancet Oncology, published on April 18, 2018, informed that this conclusion was reached at the IARC expert meeting held in March 2018, and the resulting monograph will be published in Volume 121 of the IARC Monographs.
For styrene, the evidence from human and animal studies was “limited” and “sufficient,” respectively. Animal studies provided “strong evidence of a mechanism that operates in humans,” and showed that styrene is genotoxic, Turley summarized.
Styrene is a monomer used in polystyrene and many other varieties of plastics. Styrene-6,8-oxide is used to make epoxy resins (non-food contact), but it can also be formed in styrene-containing plastics through oxidation of styrene monomer.
Andrew Turley (May 9, 2018). “IARC says plastics component styrene is ‘probably carcinogenic.’” Chemical Watch
IARC Monographs Vol 121 Group (2018). “Carcinogenicity of quinoline, styrene, and styrene-7,8-oxide.” Lancet Oncology (published April 18, 2018).