Male ICR mice were exposed to silane 1000 ppm, a concentration 200 or 2000 times higher than the recommended occupational exposure limits by many countries and academic associations, for 1, 2, 4, and 8 h (phase I study) and for 6 h/day, 5 days/week, over 2 and 4 weeks (phase II study). Hematological and biochemical studies were performed, and the animals were examined for histopathological lesions of the cornea, nasal cavity, respiratory tract, lung, liver, kidney, spleen, pancreas, thymus, thyroid, bone marrow, salivary glands, esophagus, and testis. All mice in both studies survived until they were sacrificed. In the phase I study, no exposure-related changes were found as a result of the hematological, biochemical, or histopathological examinations. In the phase II study, hematological and biochemical examinations failed to reveal any exposure-related changes, but mild irritation, manifested in the form of a small amount of exudate (eight out of ten animals), and inflammatory cells and/or necrotic cells on the nasal mucosa (six out of ten animals) was observed in the mice exposed to silane for 4 weeks. These findings suggest that silane toxicity and irritation are not severe.
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