2-Pyrrolidinone, 1-ethenyl- (1-Vinyl-2-pyrrolidone)

CAS Registry Number 88-12-0

What is it?

  • 2-Pyrrolidone, 1-ethenyl-, also known as 1-vinyl-2-pyrrolidone or NVP, is an industrial chemical.

How is it used?

  • The major use of NVP is in the industrial manufacturing of other chemicals known as NVP-derived polymers.
  • NVP-derived polymers are used in the personal care products industry as thickeners, dispersing agents and binders in cosmetics, and as a stiffener in hair grooming products.
  • NVP-derived polymers also have uses in the pharmaceutical industry. They are used as a binding agent for tablets and in film coatings of capsules to aid ingestion.
  • NVP-derived polymers have limited use in food packaging and as approved food additives.
  • Industrial uses of NVP include the manufacturing of ultra-violet cured inks and coatings.
  • NVP is also used as a formulant (non-active ingredient) in pesticides used in Canada.
  • For all of the above products, NVP is expected to be present at residual levels that are leftover from the manufacturing process.
  • NVP is not manufactured in Canada, but it is imported into Canada.

Why did the Government of Canada assess it?

  • Prior to the assessment, NVP was identified as a potential concern for human health based on its classification by international organizations as a substance that was found to cause cancer in a laboratory animal, and based on a moderate potential for exposure (not including workplace exposures) to the general population of Canada.
  • NVP was not considered to be a high priority for assessment of potential risks to the environment; however, potential environmental effects were also evaluated in this screening assessment.

How are Canadians exposed to it?

  • The general population of Canada may be exposed to low levels of NVP during the use of personal care products and pharmaceuticals containing this substance; however, this exposure is expected to be low.

How is it released to the environment?

  • NVP may be released to the environment via wastewater treatment systems as a result of industrial processes and consumer use of products containing this substance.

What are the results of the assessment?

  • The Government of Canada has conducted a science-based evaluation of NVP, called a screening assessment.
  • Screening assessments address potential for harm to the general population (not including workplace exposures) and the environment.
  • The Government of Canada has concluded that NVP is not harmful to the health of the general population at current levels of exposure.
  • Additionally, NVP is not expected to remain in the environment for a long time, to accumulate in organisms or cause harm to organisms; therefore, The Government of Canada has also concluded that NVP is not entering the environment in a quantity or under conditions that constitute a danger to the environment.

What is the Government of Canada doing?

  • Based on the conclusion of the final screening assessment, the Government of Canada proposes that no further action be taken on NVP.
  • The final screening assessment report was published on September 18, 2010.

What can Canadians do?

  • The health risks associated with a chemical depend on the hazard (its potential to cause health effects) and the dose (the amount of chemical to which you are exposed). NVP is not a concern for the environment or human health at current levels of exposure.
  • As a general precaution, Canadians are reminded when using any product to carefully follow any safety warnings and directions.
  • Canadians who handle NVP in the workplace should consult with their occupational health and safety representative about safe handling practices, applicable laws and requirements under the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System.

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