John Libbey Eurotext

European Journal of Dermatology


Contact allergy caused by isothiazolinone derivatives: an overview of non-cosmetic and unusual cosmetic sources Volume 27, numéro 2, March-April 2017


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1 University Hospital Antwerp (UZA) and University of Antwerp (UA), Antwerp, Belgium
2 University Hospitals KU Leuven (UZ Leuven) and KU Leuven, Leuven, Belgium
3 Dermatochemistry laboratory, Institute of Chemistry, University of Strasbourg, Strasbourg, France
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  • Mots-clés : allergic contact dermatitis, airborne dermatitis, benzisothiazolinone, cosmetic, detergent, isothiazolinone derivative, leatherwear, methylisothiazolinone, methylchloroisothiazolinone/methylisothiazolinone, non-cosmetic, occupational, octylisothiazolinone, paint, textile, concentration, wipe
  • DOI : 10.1684/ejd.2016.2951
  • Page(s) : 115-22
  • Année de parution : 2017

The isothiazolinone derivatives, methylchloroisothiazolinone (MCI), methylisothiazolinone (MI), benzisothiazolinone (BIT), and octylisothiazolinone (OIT), owing to their strong bactericide, fungicide and algicide properties, are widely used in non-cosmetic products, such as chemical (industrial) products, household detergents, and water-based paints, and the former two derivatives are also used in cosmetic products. However, given their inherent sensitization potential (with MCI > MI > BIT > OIT), allergic contact dermatitis is frequently observed, both in consumers as well as workers in various industries. In this review, we provide an update on the use of MCI/MI and MI in cosmetics, highlighting certain aspects of MI; the use of excessive concentrations, the presence in some less familiar cosmetic products, and the association with unusual clinical manifestations. Furthermore, the use of isothiazolinones in dish-washing and washing-machine liquids, cleaning agents for dental care, and their general presence in multi-purpose household detergents, which may elicit (airborne) allergic contact dermatitis, is discussed. Finally, we provide a brief overview of the use of isothiazolinone derivatives in the paint and textile industry, and of OIT in the leather industry in particular.