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Project at a Glance

Contents on the CD Rom

  • Lindane is an organochlorine insecticide, also known as gamma-hexachlorocyclohexane (HCH) and benzene hexachloride (BHC). It has an LD50 of 88 mg/kg, and is a suspected carcinogen. Its method of action is via interfering with the GABAa receptor/Cl- channel. It has been used in agriculture and in pharmaceutical products for the treatment of headlice and scabies.
  • Lindane is volatile with roughly 90% entering the atmosphere and ultimately being deposited in rain. In 1992 5.5 mg/L of lindane was detected in rain in Oxfordshire. Like other agricultural pesticides, lindane is very easily introduced into the water and food supply of an area through rainfall; this can lead to low-level lindane poisoning amongst the local community. A chief symptom of this is a tic causing occasional flickering of the eyelid; other than this minor discomfort, such levels of poisoning are not harmful. Lindane has caused seizures, blood disorders, and brain cancer in children, and is linked to both breast cancer and Parkinson's disease.
  • The major sources of lindane in the atmosphere are fugitive dust particles from wind erosion of contaminated soil, and volatilization from treated agricultural soil and from plant foliage sprayed with lindane. Lindane is removed from the atmosphere by rain and dry deposition, with levels of lindane in the atmosphere being seasonal and temperature-dependent.
  • Lindane can also be leached into the groundwater. It is highly soluble in water and has a tendency to remain in the water column. The estimated degradation half-lives of lindane in rivers, lakes and groundwater are 3–30 days, 30–300 days and >300 days respectively.
  • Lindane has the potential to bioaccumulate in organisms and to be transported over long distances. It is this persistence that makes it such an effective seed treatment but also a concern in the Arctic.
  • Gamma HCH is formed by the addition (oxidation) of chlorine (photochlorination) to benzene. This reaction is started by free radical initiators such as visual or ultraviolet light, X-rays, or g-rays, and produces a number of stereoisomeric compounds with the molecular formula C6H6Cl6. This mixture is commonly called technical benzene hexachloride (BHC), and contains approximately 12-18 % of the g-isomer.
  • Gamma-HCH is or has been used as an insecticide on fruit and vegetable crops (including greenhouse vegetables and tobacco), for seed treatment, in forestry (including Christmas-tree treatment), and for animal treatment. Medically, it is used for topical treatment against head and body lice and scabies.
  • Humans may be exposed to the HCH compound in several ways. In some cases, lindane is used in the form of a 1 percent cream or lotion for the treatment of scabies and lice. Humans may also be accidentally exposed to HCH during the production and use of pesticide products containing the substance. Dietary exposure is the primary route of human exposure where HCH is used on food plants and animals, since it is adsorbed from the gastrointestinal tract.
  • In the US, Alliant Pharmaceuticals sells a Lindane shampoo and a lotion used to treat human scabies infection, head lice and other ectoparasites. It is sold by prescription only, in a one-percent formulation. It has recently been banned for the treatment of head lice in California. In the United States, the Food and Drug Administration requires these products be labeled with prominent warnings about possible neurotoxicity, particularly in young patients.
  • Large amounts of technical HCH continue to be used in India, mostly for cotton protection and malaria control. 10 The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) also reports that technical HCH is still widely used in Asia and the countries of the former Soviet Union. It is also suspected there are stockpiles of lindane in various African and Asian countries and in Russia.
General Information
  • Fact Sheet
  • Consumer Factsheet
  • What is Lindane ?
  • Environmental Behavior
  • Health Effects
  • Chemical Watch Factsheet
  • Medication Guide - Lindane (LIHN-dane) Shampoo
  • Medication Guide
    Lindane (LIHN-dane) Lotion
  • Quick Guide for Removing Head Lice
  • Insecticide Seed Treatments
  • Guidelines for Drinking Water Quality
  • Lindane in Drinking-water

Market and Reports

  • Lindane Use in the AERS Database
  • Practice Prevention
  • Purchasing for Pollution Prevention
  • Lindane Case Study
  • Lindane Task Force Trip Report
  • The North American Regional Action Plan (NARAP) on Lindane
  • Who Profits from Lindane?
  • The future of lindane in North America
  • Atmospheric Supply of Lindane
  • A cluster of haematuria cases in a pesticide-manufacturing plant
  • Public Health Goal for LINDANE In Drinking Water
  • Environmental Criteria

Risk Assessment

  • Draft Risk Management Evaluation for Lindane
  • Limits on Lindane
  • Pest Management Regulatory Agency
  • Toxic effects
  • Risk profile
  • Safety of Topical Lindane Products for the Treatment of Scabies and Lice
  • Reducing Human and Environmental Risks from the Insecticide Lindane
  • North America acts to reduce risk of exposure to lindane


  • Lindane Borer
  • Lindane ST 40
  • Lindane Technical BP Grade
  • Lindane Lotion USP
  • Lindane Technical - Micronised
  • Lindane Shampoo, USP
  • Lindane in Soil Tube Kit
  • Technical Lindane
  • Product Advancements


  • Extraction of Organohalides from Fish Tissue
  • Degradation of Lindane by Escherichia coli
  • Environmental Consequences of  Lindane Production
  • The Legacy of Lindane HCH
    Isomer Production
  • Lindane
  • Slow-Release Inoculation Allows Sustained Biodegradation of -Hexachlorocyclohexane

Various View Points

  • Cancellation Order
  • EPA Announces Halt to Lindane for Ag Use
  • NGO statement on Lindane for NARAP meeting
  • Public Health Statement
  • Statement in Support of the Elimination of Lindane Use in North America
  • Registration Eligibility Decision for Lindane


  • Kanoria Chemicals & Industries Limited (KCI)
  • Lindane's Dirty Secret
  • The Lindane Plant-Porto Romano
  • India Pesticides Limited
  • Oltchim
  • Pesticide contamination in the abandoned chemical plant, Porto Romano


  • Use of  Lindane
  • Major Uses of Lindane
  • Skin with Lindane Application
  • Lindane (CAS No. 58-89-9)
    and Other Hexachlorocyclohexane
    Isomers uses
  • Lindane Uses

Patent and Technology

  • Recovery of hexabromocyclododecane particles
  • Leaching Contaminants from Post Consumer for Reuse in Food Contact Application
  • Dechlorination of Lindane
  • Transgenic Plant for Lindane Degradation
  • Insecticide Composition for Use in the Form of Shampoo

Company Profile

  • Atanor S.A
  • Chemet Chemicals Ltd
  • Químicas ORO S.A.
  • Aimco Pesticides Ltd


  • Manufacturers, Suppliers, Distributors, Exporters in India
  • Manufacturers and Suppliers of Lindane
  • Indian Exporters & Manufacturers
  • Lindane Manufacturers
  • Simonis B. V
  • Lindane gamma-hexachlorocyclohexane Suppliers
  • Wonder Chemic Ltd.


  • Experts in hexachlorocyclohexane
  • Experts in lindane
  • Wolfram Parzefall
  • James Pinson Ludwig
  • Quest Consultants & Associates, Inc.

Policies and Regulation

  • Pesticide Regulation Under
  • Pest Management Regulatory Agency
  • Pesticide Regulation Under NAFTA: Harmonization in Process?
  • Pesticides in your food
  • Regulation of the European Parliament
  • Statements of Policy

Clinical Effects

  • Childhood Pesticide Exposures on the Texas–Mexico Border: Clinical Manifestations and Poison Center Use
  • Effects of Pesticides on the Immune System
  • Evaluation of Neurotoxicity of Lindane
  • Long-Term Psychological and Neurological Complications of Lindane Poisoning
  • Health Hazard Information
  • Potential Health Effects of Lindane
  • Concerns over lindane treatment for scabies and lice


  • Lindane Reduction Project
  • Lindane in India
  • Manufacture of Lindane
  • UNU Project on EDC Pollution in the East Asian Coastal Hydrosphere
  • Lindane Modification of Uterine Muscle
  • Non-point Pesticide Transport from Fields to Streams
  • Twelve TMDLs for Legacy Pollutants
  • Lindane in the Czech Republic


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