Methylene chloride is generally regarded as being mutagenic although results of in vivo and in vitro studies have been conflicting. Methylene chloride has been shown to cause chromosomal aberrations in some in vitro studies. There is some evidence that methylene chloride is clastogenic in vitro and it is thought to be a weak mutagen in mammalian systems. Both positive and negative results have been reported in in vivo studies examining the potential of methylene chloride to induce gene mutation and cause chromosomal aberrations or DNA damage and repair (ATSDR, 1993a,b).
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