Toxaphene, a complex mixture of polychloroterpenes and a major insecticide, is mutagenic.

Abstract

Toxaphene, the most widely used chlorinated insecticide, is mutagenic in the Salmonella test without requiring liver homogenate for activity. This insecticide is a complex mixture (more than 177 polychloroterpenes) with carcinogenic activity in rodents. Some but not all of the mutagenic components are easily separated from the insecticidal ingredients. 

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