• Article

Developmental toxicity evaluation of ethylene glycol by gavage in New Zealand white rabbits

Artificially inseminated New Zealand white (NZW) rabbits were administered ethylene glycol (EG) by gavage on Gestational Days (GD) 6 through 19 at doses of 0, 100, 500, 1000, or 2000 mg/kg/day, with 23-24 inseminated animals per group. Clinical signs were recorded and water consumption was measured daily; does were weighed on GD 0, 6-19, 25, and 30. At necropsy (GD 30), maternal liver, kidney, and gravid uterine weights were recorded. Histopathologic examination was performed on kidneys from 10 does/dose and for all unscheduled deaths. Ovarian corpora lutea were counted and uterine implantation sites (total sites, resorptions, dead and live fetuses) were recorded. All live fetuses were weighed, sexed, and examined for external, visceral, and skeletal malformations and variations. EG resulted in profound maternal toxicity at 2000 mg/kg/day (42% mortality; three early deliveries and one spontaneous abortion) associated with renal pathology and unaccompanied by any other indicators of maternal toxicity. Renal lesions at 2000 mg/kg/day involved the cortical renal tubules and included intraluminal oxalate crystals, epithelial necrosis, and tubular dilatation and degeneration. No dose-related maternal toxicity occurred at 100-1000 mg/kg/day. There was no indication of developmental toxicity at any dose tested, including no effects on pre- or postimplantation loss, number of fetuses, fetal body weight, or sex ratio (% male fetuses) per litter, and no evidence of teratogenicity. The 'no observable adverse effect level' (NOAEL) for maternal toxicity was therefore 1000 mg/kg/day and the NOAEL for developmental toxicity was at least 2000 mg/kg/day in this study. The sensitivity of NZW rabbits relative to that of Sprague-Dawley rats and Swiss mice for maternal and developmental toxicity from gavage administration of EG during organogenesis can be determined for maternal toxicity: rabbits > mice > rats, and for developmental toxicity, mice >> rats >> rabbits


Tyl, R., Price, C., Marr, M., Myers, C., Seely, JC., Heindel, JJ., & Schwetz, BA. (1993). Developmental toxicity evaluation of ethylene glycol by gavage in New Zealand white rabbits. Fundamental and Applied Toxicology, 20(4), 402-412.