Overview There are two forms of mercury: inorganic mercury and organic methylmercury (MeHg). When inorganic mercury evaporates, it is biotransformed into methylmercury through microbial methylation in saltwater and freshwater sediments. Methylmercury is a persistent… Continue reading


Chemical Description Melamine (CAS No. 108-78-1) is an organic base and a trimer of cyanamide, with a 1,3,5-triazine skeleton. Like cyanamide, it contains 66% Nitrogen by mass and, if mixed with resins, has fire-retardant properties due… Continue reading


Arsenic   Overview Arsenic has long been known for its use as a poison. Cesare Borgia and his family used arsenic to consolidate power in 16th century Italy and it is rumored that Napoleon Bonaparte may have beenpoisoned… Continue reading

Chlorinated dibenzo dioxins (CDDs)

Dioxin Overview The term dioxin is commonly used to refer to a family of toxic chemicals that all share a similar chemical structure and a common mechanism of toxic action. This family includes… Continue reading

Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs)

Polychorinated biphenyls (PCBs) Overview Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) belong to a broad family of man-made organic chemicals known as chlorinated hydrocarbons. PCBs were domestically manufactured from 1929 until their manufacture was banned in 1979.… Continue reading

Polybrominated Diphenyl Ethers (PBDEs)

Polybrominated Diphenyl Ethers (PBDEs) Overview PBDEs, a subgroup of brominated flame retardants, are persistent and bioaccumulative industrial chemicals that cause numerous problems including Cancer, thyroid problems, and neurodevelopmentaleffects (Schmidt, 2003) (Eriksson et al, 2006). They have been widely used since the 1970s as… Continue reading