NEHA November 2022 Journal of Environmental Health

November 2022 • Journal of Environmental Health 11 were identified by library matching but not confirmed by GC/MS: phenyl esters of alkyl sulfonic acids (ASEs; trade name Mesamoll), dibenzoate esters (trade name Benzoflex), epoxidized soybean oil (ESBO), glycerin triacetate, and tris(2-ethylhexyl)trimellitate. Extraction-IR was needed to clearly identify phthalates and alternatives in some samples such as vinyl floor tiles. Spectra from floor tiles (not shown) frequently were dominated by calcium carbonate such that the plasticizer peaks were not discernible. Upon extraction, the plasticizer could be clearly identified. FTIR did not produce false positives for phthalates. For DEHT, however, there were two apparent false positives out of 96 GC/MS results under the LOD for reason unknown. There were none for DINCH, ATBC, and DEHA. Four cases of apparent false negatives for DEHT were samples that had either high levels of phthalates or, for the two wire insulation samples, a trimellitate, suggesting DEHT was a minor plasticizer that was obscured (Supplemental Table 1). Our testing of hundreds of products has revealed potential pitfalls in identifying phthalates. Dibenzoate esters have a pair of twin peaks close to phthalates. DEHT has a weak peak in the same region. Trimellitates have a pair of peaks at 1,114 and 1,068 cm-1, which is close to two key phthalate peaks. If phthalates initially are suspected due to any of these features, their exact peak positions should be verified and other key phthalate regions should be examined. DINCH, ATBC, and DEHA lack sharp, well-separated peaks and can be confused with one another in a multicomponent sample. FTIR sometimes failed to identify a plasticizer in a sample containing more than one. Performance was least consistent for DEHA. It is likely that the adipate was obscured by higher level co-plasticizers. Phosphate esters, which are used as plasticizers or as flame retardants, are also detectable by FTIR in various matrices. We identified triphenyl phosphate, for example, in nail polishes that we dried and subjected to passive extraction with isopropanol. Omnic Specta software was used to assist in the multicomponent nail polish extracts. Selected Flame Retardants Flame retardants can be added to polymers at relatively low levels (e.g., a few tenths of a perSummary of Plasticizers and Flame Retardant Chemicals Detected by Fourier-Transform Infrared (FTIR) Spectroscopy in Consumer Product Samples Collected Between 2014 and 2020 Additive Detected by FTIR Confirmed by Gas Chromatography/ Mass Spectrometry (GC/MS) Product Types Plasticizers Ortho-phthalates Yes (see Supplemental Table 1 for details) Cap gaskets from bottled beverages, vinyl gloves, floor tiles, dance floors, tub mats, flipflop straps, wire insulation, floor runners, pencil pouches, garden hoses, shelf liners, headbands, shower curtain liners, wall decals, wallpaper, window shades, tub appliques Adipate Yes (DEHA) Wall decals, milking inflation liner ATBC or TBC Yes (ATBC) Doll heads, rubber ducks, flip-flop straps DEHT Yes Cap gaskets from bottled beverages, vinyl gloves, floor tiles, dance floors, tub mats, shelf liners, jelly shoes, doll heads, placemats, window shades, wall decals, window clings, crib mattress covers, garden hoses, pencil pouches, paddleballs, bath toys DINCH Yes Doll heads, window clings, crib mattress covers, bath toys ASEs Not tested Crib mattress covers Benzoate ester (dibenzoate esters of dipropylene or ethylene glycols) Not tested Floor tiles ESBO Not tested Cap gaskets from bottled beverages Glycerin triacetate Not tested Dairy tubing Tris(2-ethylhexyl) trimellitate Not tested Wire insulation Flame retardants PMMMPs Yes Child car seat fabrics and foams TBOEP Yes Child car seat fabrics and foams TEP Yes (two samples); no (two samples) Child car seat fabrics and foams DBDPE Yes Child car seat fabrics and foams Triaryl or diaryl phosphates Yes (TPHP and RDP) Child car seat fabrics and foams TDCPP Not tested Child headphone foams TCPP Not tested Child headphone foams Note. GC/MS data for the individual samples can be viewed in Supplemental Tables 1 and 2. ASEs = alkyl sulfonic acid phenyl esters; ATBC = acetyltributylcitrate; DBDPE = decabromodiphenyl ethane; DEHA = di(2-ethylhexyl) adipate; DEHT = di(2-ethylhexyl) terephthalate; DINCH = 1,2-cyclohexane dicarboxylic acid diisononyl ester; ESBO = epoxidized soybean oil; PMMMPs = 5-ethyl-2-methyl-2-oxido-1,3,2-dioxaphosphinan-5-yl)methyl methyl methylphosphonate and bis[(5-ethyl-2-methyl-1,3,2-dioxaphosphorinan-5-yl)methyl] methyl phosphonate p,p’-dioxide); RDP = resorcinol bis(diphenyl phosphate); TBC = tributyl citrate; TBOEP = tris(2-butoxyethyl)phosphate; TCPP = tris(1-chloro-2-propyl) phosphate; TDCPP = tris(1,3-dichloro-2-propyl)phosphate; TEP = triethyl phosphate; TPHP = triphenyl phosphate. TABLE 1

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