nicotine (Black Leaf 40) Chemical Profile 4/85
CHEMICAL NAME: 3-(1-Methyl-2-pyrrolidyl)pyridine (56)
DEC INGRED. CODE:
TRADE NAME(S): Black Leaf 40 (56)
FORMULATION(S): Nicotine alkaloid, 95%; nicotine sulfate, 40% (56)
TYPE: Alkaloid insecticide
BASIC PRODUCERS: Chemical Formulators, Inc.
2045 Peachtree Rd., NE, Suite 200
Atlanta, GA 30309
STATUS: General use
PRINCIPAL USES: Sucking insects on plants but now largely replaced
by organophosphate insecticides. Formerly used in greenhouses as a
fumigant and as a paint roost for chicken lice and mites (1).
Little or no nicotine is now produced in the U.S. Limited
supplies are imported from India. Two basic types of nicotine products
have been marketed: the alkaloid and the sulfate. Nicotine alkaloid
is relatively volatile and acts both by contact and by fumigant action.
The sulfate is usually marketed as an aqueous solution containing 40%
nicotine equivalent. When added to alkaline water or to soap solution
the alkaloid is liberated, being then more active than the sulfate alone
To be developed.
II. PHYSICAL PROPERTIES
MOLECULAR FORMULA: C10 H14 N2 (62)
MOLECULAR WEIGHT: 162.2 (62)
PHYSICAL STATE: Colorless liquid which darkens slowly and becomes
viscous on exposure to air (pure compound) (62).
ODOR: Slight fishy odor when warm (14)
MELTING POINT: -80 C (pure compound) (62)
BOILING POINT: 247 C (pure compound) (62)
VAPOR PRESSURE: 5.65 Pa at 25 C (pure compound) (62)
SOLUBILITY: Miscible with water below 60 C, forming a hydrate,
and above 210 C (pure compound) (62).
III. HEALTH HAZARD INFORMATION
OSHA STANDARD: 0.5 mg/m3 averaged over an eight-hour work shift (14).
NIOSH RECOMMENDED LIMIT: None established
ACGIH RECOMMENDED LIMIT: TWA (Time Weighted Average) = 0.5 mg/m3;
STEL (Short Term Exposure Limit) = 1.5 mg/m3
(deleted); skin notation (15c).
A. ACUTE TOXICITY
DERMAL: LD50 = 50 mg/kg (rabbit, single application) (62)
ORAL: LD50 = 50-60 mg/kg (rat) (62)
B. SUBACUTE AND CHRONIC TOXICITY:
Nicotine has caused abnormalities in the offspring of laboratory
IV. ENVIRONMENTAL CONSIDERATIONS
Little hazard to birds, fish and beneficial insects. Biological
magnification unlikely (1).
Approximate Residual Period: Very short, 1 day on plants; same in
soil and water (1).
V. EMERGENCY AND FIRST AID PROCEDURES
The chemical information provided below has been condensed
from original source documents, primarily from "Recognition and
Management of Pesticide Poisonings", 3rd ed. by Donald P. Morgan,
which have been footnoted. This information has been provided in
this form for your convenience and general guidance only. In
specific cases, further consultation and reference may be required
and is recommended. This information is not intended as a sub-
stitute for a more exhaustive review of the literature nor for the
judgement of a physician or other trained professional.
If poisoning is suspected, do not wait for symptoms to develop.
Contact a physician, the nearest hospital, or the nearest Poison
SYMPTOMS AND SIGNS OF POISONING
Nicotine preparations, especially those using the free alkaloid,
are well absorbed across the gut wall, lung, and skin. Poisoning
symptoms from excessive doses appear promptly. They are due to
transient stimulation, then prolonged depression, of the central
nervous system, autonomic ganglia, and motor end-plates of skeletal
muscle. Central nervous system injury is manifest as headache,
dizziness, incoordination, tremors, then clonic convulsions leading to
tonic-extensor convulsions which are often fatal. In some instances,
convulsive activity is minimal and death by respiratory arrest occurs
within a few minutes. Effects on autonomic ganglia give rise to
sweating, salivation, nausea, abdominal pain, diarrhea, and
hypertension. The heart is usually slow, and often arrhythmic. Block
of skeletal muscle motor end-plates causes profound weakness, then
paralysis. Death may occur from respiratory depression or from shock.
Nicotine can be measured in blood and urine to confirm poisoning
SKIN CONTACT: Immediately flush the contaminated skin with water.
If liquid nicotine or solutions of nicotine soak through the clothing,
remove the clothing immediately and flush the skin with water. Get
medical attention immediately (14).
INGESTION: If the person is conscious, give large quantities of
water immediately. After the water has been swallowed, try to get the
person to vomit by having him touch the back of his throat with his
finger. Do not make an unconscious person vomit. Get medical attention
INHALATION: Move the exposed person to fresh air at once. If
breathing has stopped, perform artificial respiration. Keep the affected
person warm and at rest. Get medical attention as soon as possible (14).
EYE CONTACT: Wash eyes immediately with large amounts of water,
lifting the lower and upper lids occasionally. Get medical attention
immediately. Contact lenses should not be worn when working with this
NOTES TO PHYSICIAN:
Promptly wash contaminated skin and flush eyes with water.
Ingestion of nicotine requires immediate gastric intubation,
aspiration, and lavage, the latter preferably with 1.5% tannic acid
solution, of 1:5000 potassium permanganate solution. Before
withdrawing the lavage tube, instill 3-4 ounces of activated charcoal
in a slurry of water. Diazapam and/or barbiturates may be required to
control convulsions. Atropine and phenoxybenzamine (Dibenzaline) may
help to control the autonomic manifestations. Positive pressure
ventilation of the lungs with oxygen may be necessary to sustain life
when respiration is arrested (25).
VI. FIRE AND EXPLOSION INFORMATION
GENERAL: Toxic gases and vapors (such as oxides of nitrogen and carbon
monoxide) may be released in a fire involving nicotine (14).
EXTINGUISHER TYPE: Alcohol foam, carbon dioxide, dry chemical (14).
Generally compatible with other insecticides and fungicides (1).
Contact with strong oxidizers may cause fires and explosions. Contact
with strong acids may cause violent spattering (14).
VIII. PROTECTIVE MEASURES
PROTECTIVE CLOTHING: Employees should be provided with and required to
use impervious clothing, gloves, face shields (8" minimum), and other
appropriate protective clothing necessary to prevent any possibility of
skin contact with liquid nicotine (14).
Employees should be provided with and required to use splash-proof
safety goggles where there is any possibility of liquid nicotine
contacting the eyes (14).
PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT: Respirators may be used when engineering and
work practice controls are not technically feasible, when such controls
are in the process of being installed, or when they fail and need to be
supplemented. If the use of respirators is necessary, the only
respirators permitted are those that have been approved by the Mine
Safety and Health Administration or by the National Institute for
Occupational Safety and Health (14).
IX. PROCEDURES FOR SPILLS AND LEAKS
IN CASE OR EMERGENCY, CALL, DAY OR NIGHT
PESTICIDE TEAM SAFETY NETWORK/CHEMTREC
Persons not wearing protective equipment and clothing should be
restricted from areas of spills or leaks until cleanup has been
If nicotine is spilled or leaked, the following steps should be
1. Ventilate area of spill or leak.
2. For small quantities, absorb on paper towels. Evaporate in a
safe place (such as a fume hood). Allow sufficient time for
evaporating vapors to completely clear the hood ductwork.
Burn the paper in a suitable location away from combustible
materials. Large quantities can be reclaimed or collected and
atomized in a suitable combustion chamber equipped with an
appropriate effluent gas cleaning device.
Waste disposal methods:
Nicotine may be disposed of:
1. By absorbing it in vermiculite, dry sand, earth or a similar
material and disposing in a secured sanitary landfill.
2. By atomizing in a suitable combusion chamber equipped with an
appropriate effluent gas cleaning device (14).
X. LITERATURE CITED
1. Harding, W.C. 1979. Pesticide profiles, part one: insecticides
and miticides. Univ. Maryland, Coop. Ext. Serv. Bull. 267.
14. U. S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Institute
for Occuptational Safety and Health. 1981. Occupational
health guidelines for chemical hazards. F. W. Mackinson, R.
S. Stricoff, L. J. Partridge, Jr., and A. D. Little, Inc.,
eds. DHHS (NIOSH) Publ. No. 81-123. Washington, DC.
15c. American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists. 1984.
TLVs: threshold limit values for chemical substances and
physical agents in the work environment and biological exposure
indices with intended changes for 1984-85. Cincinnati, OH.
25. Morgan, D.P. 1982. Recognition and management of pesticide
poisonings, 3rd ed. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency,
Washington, DC. 120 pp.
56. Farm Chemicals Handbook, 70th ed. 1984. R. T. Meister, G. L.
Berg, C. Sine, S. Meister, and J. Poplyk, eds. Meister
Publishing Co., Willoughby, OH.
62. The Pesticide Manual: A World Compendium, 7th ed. 1983. C.R.
Worthing, ed. The British Crop Protection Council, Croydon,
England. 695 pp.
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