Carcinogenic and toxic substances

The following list of carcinogenic chemicals is not exhaustive. Chemicals that are structural analogues to known carcinogens should be handled carefully because adequate data on carcinogenicity of such analogues may never become available. It is prudent to regard all chemicals belonging to certain chemical classes (e.g. polycyclic hydrocarbons, nitrosamines, aromatic amines, azo dyes, arsenic compounds) as presenting a carcinogenic hazard. Consequently some chemicals have been grouped into general classes to highlight the risk associated with the class of compound.

Schedule 1 Carcinogens
benzidine and its salts (including benzidine dihydrochloride)
benzidine and its salts (including benzidine dihydrochloride)
chloromethyl methyl ether (technical grade which contains bis(chloromethyl)ether)
2-Naphthylamine and its salts
Schedule 2 Notifiable Carcinogenic Substances
3,3-Dichlorobenzidine and its salts
Diethyl sulfate
Dimethyl sulfate
Ethylene dibromide when used as a fumigant
4,4-Methylene bis(2-chloroaniline) (MOCA)
o-Toluidine and o-Toluidine hydrochloride
Vinyl chloride monomer

Scheduled Carcinogens are prohibited substances that can only be used in a licenced laboratory. If there are any of these chemicals in your laboratory, please contact the Stewardship Manager or a Safety Officer as soon as possible, in order that WorkCover be notified and the Hazardous Substances Regulations be complied with.

Chemicals considered to present a carcinogenic hazard to humans are listed below by their chemical name and Chemical Abstract Services number (CAS no.).

Chemical name CAS No. Tested by
Acetamide   IARC
Acetaldehyde 75-07-0 IARC 2B, NTP
2-Acetylaminofluorene 53-96-3 OSHA, NTP
Acrylonitrile 107-13-1 OSHA*, IARC 2A
Acrylamide 79-06-1 IARC 2A, NTP
Adriamycin 23214-92-8 IARC 2A, NTP
Aflatoxins   IARC 1, NTP
p-Aminoazobenzene 60-09-3 IARC 2B
o-Aminoazotoluene 97-56-4 IARC 2B, NTP
4-Aminobiphenyl 92-67-1 NTP
Arsenic and arsenic compounds#   OSHA*, IARC 1, NTP
Azathioprine 446-86-6 IARC 1, NTP
Benzene 71-43-2 OSHA*, IARC 1, NTP
Benzidine 92-87-5 OSHA, IARC 1, NTP
Benzidine derivatives or example:   IARC 2A, NTP
Benzidine - based dyes    
o-Anisidine 90-04-0 IARC 2B
N,N'-Diacetylbenzidine 613-35-4  
3,3'-Dichlorobenzidine 91-94-1  
3,3'-Dimethoxybenzidine (o-Dianisidine) 119-90-4  
3,3'-Dimethylbenzidine 9 (o-Toluidine) 119-93-7  
p-Cresidine 120-71-8  
Beryllium (7440-41-7) and beryllium compounds    
N,N-bis (2-Chloroethyl)-2-naphthylamine (Chlornaphazine)  494-03-1  
Bis(chloromethyl) ether  432-88-1  
1,4-Butanediol dimethanesulfonate (Myleran) 55-98-1  
Butyrolactone 36536-46-6 IARC 2B
Cadmium and cadmium compounds 7440-43-9 OSHA*, IARC 1, NTP
Chlorambucil 305-03-3 IARC 1, NTP
Carbon tetachloride   IARC 2B, NTP
4-Chloro-o-toluidine 6164-98-3 IARC 2A
4-Chloro-o-phenylenediamine 95-83-0 IARC 2B, NTP
Chromium compounds, hexavalent#   IARC 1, NTP
Cisplatin 15663-27-1 IARC 2A, NTP
Cyclophosphamide 6055-19-2 IARC 1, NTP
Daunomycin 20830-81-3 IARC 2B
2,4-Diaminoanisole (2,4-DAA) 615-05-4 IARC 2B
2,4-Diaminotoluene (2,4-DAT) 95-80-7 IARC 2B, NTP
Dianiline derivatives with methylene -,oxy-,thio-and other bridges, for example: 
28434-86-8 IARC 2B
4,4'-Methylene bis (2-chloroaniline) (MOCA) 101-14-4  
4,4'-Methylenedianiline (MDA) 101-77-9 IARC 2B, NTP
4,4'-Methylene bis (2-methylaniline) 868-88-0  
4,4'-Oxydianiline (4,4'-diaminodiphenyl ether) 101-80-4 IARC 2B
4,4'-Thiodianiline 139-65-1 IARC 2B
1,2-Dibromo-3-chloropropane (DBCP) 96-12-8 OSHA*, IARC 2B, NTP
Diethyl sulfate 64-67-5 IARC 2A, NTP
Diethyl hydrazine 1615-80-1 IARC 2B
1,1-Dimethyl hydrazine 57-14-7 IARC 2A, NTP
1,2-Dimethyl hydrazine 306-37-6 IARC 2A
Dimethylcarbamoyl chloride 79-44-7 IARC 2A, NTP
Dimethyl sulfate 77-78-1 IARC 2A, NTP
1,4-Dioxane 123-91-1 IARC 2B, NTP
Epichlorohydrin 106-89-8 IARC 2A, NTP
Ethylene dibromide 106-93-4 IARC 2A, NTP
Epoxides for example: 
1464-53-5 IARC 2A, NTP
Ethylene oxide 75-21-8 OSHA*, IARC 1, NTP
Propylene oxide 75-56-9 IARC 2B, NTP
Formaldehyde 50-00-0 OSHA*, IARC 2A, NTP
Hexamethylphosphoramide 680-31-9 IARC 2B, NTP
2-Naphthylamine  91-59-8 OSHA
Nickel and nickel compounds#   IARC 1, NTP
Nitrosocompounds for example: 
Bis(chloroethyl) nitrosourea (BCNU) 
154-93-8 IARC 2A, NTP
1-(2-Chloroethyl)-3-cyclohexyl-1-nitrosourea (CCNU)  13010-47-4 IARC 2A, NTP
N-Ethyl-N-nitrosourea 759-73-9 IARC 2A
N-Methyl-N'-nitro-N-Nitrosoguanidine (MNNG) 70-25-7 IARC 2A, NTP
N-Nitrosodimethylamine  62-75-9 IARC 2A, NTP
Polycyclic aromatic hydocarbons for example: 
Benz(a) anthracene
56-55-3 IARC 2A, NTP
Benzo(a) pyrene 50-32-8 IARC 2A, NTP
Dibenz (a,h) anthracene 189-64-0 IARC 2A, NTP
Styrene 100-42-5 IARC 2B
Styrene oxide 96-90-3 IARC 2A
o-Toluidine 95-53-4 IARC 2B, NTP
Treosulfan 299-75-2 IARC 1
Tris (2,3-dibromopropyl) phosphate 126-72-7 IARC 2A, NTP
Vinyl chloride 75-01-4 OSHA*, IARC 1, NTP
# Evidence of carcinogenicity applies to the group of chemicals as a whole and not necessarily to all individual chemicals.
IARC - International Agency for Research on Cancer, NTP - National Toxicology Program, OSHA - Occupational Safety & Health Administration, OSHA* - indicates substances for which OSHA has promulgated standards for health in addition to carcinogenicity
Class 1 -- Known human carcinogen
Class 2A -- Probable human carcinogen
Class 2B -- Possible human carcinogen
Class 3 -- Not classifiable for human carcinogenicity
Class 4 -- Probably not carcinogenic to humans


The use of cyanides is regulated under the Drugs, Poisons and Controlled Substances Regulations (Part V - Special Poisons - arsenic, cyanide, strychnine). All users within the School must conform to the National Occupational Health and Safety Commission's Guidelines (pdf 56.9kb) on the safe use of cyanides as well as the School's own policy.

Mercury and its compounds

Because of its toxicity and the difficulty of cleaning up spills the use of mercury should be kept to a minimum.Any large spillage of mercury should be reported to the Safety Officer and an Incident Report submitted. Small droplets of mercury may be difficult to sweep up and should be removed with a small amount of zinc dust, making sure to remove any surplus zinc dust.All mercury compounds should be treated as hazardous. Dialkylmercury compounds are extremely dangerous - a single drop on the skin can cause death.