Teratologic evaluation of dermally applied diethylene glycol monomethyl ether in rabbits

Fundam Appl Toxicol. 1986 Jul;7(1):68-75. doi: 10.1016/0272-0590(86)90198-3.


Diethylene glycol monomethyl ether (DEGME) was applied to the skin of pregnant rabbits on Days 6 through 18 of gestation in order to assess the fetotoxic and teratogenic potential by the dermal route. Rabbits were treated with 0, 50, 250, or 750 mg/kg/day of DEGME, and fetuses were examined for external, visceral, and skeletal alterations. Topical application of the highest dose, 750 mg/kg/day, produced slight embryotoxicity, fetotoxicity, and toxicity in the maternal animal. Maternal effects were characterized by decreased weight gain and a concurrent physiologic decrease in red blood cells and packed cell volume values. In addition, a slight increase in embryonic resorptions was observed. The fetal alterations observed, mild forelimb flexure, slight-to-moderate dilation of the renal pelvis, retrocaval ureter, cervical spurs, and delayed ossification of the skull and sternebral bones, are considered to be indicative of fetotoxicity but not teratogenicity. Slight fetotoxicity in the form of delayed ossification of the skull and cervical spurs was seen in the 250 mg/kg/day dose group. No adverse maternal, embryonic, or fetal effects were observed at 50 mg/kg/day.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Topical
  • Animals
  • Ethylene Glycols / administration & dosage
  • Ethylene Glycols / toxicity*
  • Female
  • Male
  • Pregnancy
  • Rabbits
  • Skin / drug effects
  • Skin / pathology
  • Teratogens*


  • Ethylene Glycols
  • Teratogens
  • carbitol