Significance of biodurability of mineral fibers for their toxicity and carcinogenic potency in the abdominal cavity of rats in comparison with the low sensitivity of inhalation studies
At the same time that carcinogenicity of very thin glass fibers after interpleural and intraperitoneal (ip) administration was demonstrated (1,2) researchers found that gypsum fibers and HCI-leached chrysotile fibers were easily soluble in the peritoneal cavity. This led to the conclusion that the chemical composition of fibers was not responsible for the carcinogenesis but that the degree of carcinogenic potency of a fiber depended on the extent to which it retained its fibrous structure. A thin glass fiber with a low biodurability did not induce tumors after ip injection of a high dose, although the ip test had been criticized for being "overly sensitive". The ip model has been the most successful for determining carcinogenicity of inorganic fibers and establishing dose-response relationships; but to determine the possibilities and limitations of this test model, very high doses of nonfibrous silicon carbide and of a slightly durable glass fiber type were injected ip in Wistar rats.