Study shows ETBE is not likely to be a mutagenic carcinogen

Posted on 24.04.2023 in News
Study shows ETBE is not likely to be a mutagenic carcinogen

Sustainable Fuels members are dedicated to the responsible production, use and promotion of the fuel ethers, which include (bio-) MTBE, (bio-) ETBE, (bio-) TAME and (bio-) TAEE. As fuel ether manufacturers we are committed to maximize the benefits for society whilst minimizing risks to human health and the environment. In parallel, we cooperate with regulators and civil society organizations to inform and educate about the societal benefits and potential risks of our products in a scientifically sound and unbiased manner.

Our product ETBE is globally used as a gasoline oxygenate, including in the EU, the United States and Japan. The main purpose of (co-) blending ETBE is to increase the octane level of the gasoline, enhance the fuel consumption efficiency and lower air pollution from tailpipe emissions. Inhalation of gasoline vapours is the primary potential route of human exposure to ETBE. As such, ETBE has been reported to cause liver adenomas (non-carcinogenic tumours) following inhalation in male rats in a 2-year study at the highest inhalation concentration of ETBE tested at 5000 ppm.
In our latest study, Sustainable Fuels have sought to understand if ETBE was causing the liver adenoma via a mutagenic mode of action.

Following detailed analysis of in vivo tests, Sustainable Fuels have found that ETBE does not appear to be a mutagenic driver for liver adenoma following inhalation exposure. This means that ETBE is not likely to be a mutagenic carcinogen.

While we stand ready and open to review, assess and investigate the impact of ETBE on human health on a continuous basis, the outcome of this latest study indicates that for general ETBE use cases, in particular for car refueling purposes, ETBE is a safe gasoline blend-stock. It does not only help improve the fuel’s combustion inside the engine, lower the CO2 and pollutant emissions values at tailpipe, but is, when correctly produced, handled and used, safe for human health.