chemical information


Chemical Class:

Organochlorine Pesticide (OC)

Found in these people:

Andrea Martin, Charlotte Brody, Davis Baltz, Lucy Waletsky, Lexi Rome, Sharyle Patton, Bill Moyers

Found in these locations:

Sausalito, CA; Round Hill, VA; Berkeley, CA; Pleasantville, NY; Mill Valley, CA; Bolinas, CA; NJ, USA


In laboratory animals, methoxychlor causes liver toxicity (liver discoloration, altered liver weight); kidney/renal toxicity (altered kidney weight, cellular changes in the renal tubules); increased adrenal weight; immunotoxicity (increase spleen weight, thymus atrophy); neurotoxicity (altered activity); reproductive toxicity (infertility, altered mating behavior, uterus and vagina cellular effects and weight decreases, testicular cellular and weight effects, decreased sperm count, early pregnancy loss and abortion); endocrine effects (decreased progesterone in females, decreased pituitary weight, increased levels of pituitary prolactin, follicle stimulating hormone and thyroid stimulating hormone). Developmental effects include decreased neonatal body weight and early puberty (ATSDR 2002c).

Extremely little is known about the effects of methoxychlor in humans although associations with leukemia, high pulse rate, decreased blood pressure and possibly anemia have been reported (ATSDR 2002c).


Organochlorine chemical, a class largely banned in the U.S. that builds up in the body over time, linked to cancer and reproductive harm.

Methoxychlor has been found in 7 of the 27 people tested in EWG/Commonweal studies.

Top health concerns for Methoxychlor (References)

health concern or target organ weight of evidence
Reproduction and fertilityunknown

Results for Methoxychlor

in blood serum (lipid weight)

Showing results from EWG/Commonweal Study #1, industrial chemicals and pesticides in adults, EWG Study #3, industrial chemicals and pesticides in adults, EWG/Commonweal Study #4, industrial chemicals and pesticides in cord blood, EWG Study #8, chemicals in mother and 2 children, San Francisco Reporter

EWG/Commonweal results

  • geometric mean: 0.306 ng/g (lipid weight) in blood serum
  • found in 7 of 27 people in the group
0 ng/g (lipid weight) in blood serum 2.73

Methoxychlor results

Detailed toxicity classifications (References)

classification governing entity/references
Reproductive effects - weight of evidence unknown/unassessedDamgaard, I. N., N. E. Skakkebaek, et al. (2006). Persistent pesticides in human breast milk and cryptorchidism. Environ Health Perspect 114(7): 1133-8.