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11113-50-1 Usage


Boric acid plays a role as a “stomach poison” for certain pest such as cockroaches, ants and termites. As an insecticide, it usually applied in bait form or used as a dry powder in which containing a feeding attractant and then added into crevices and creaks so that it forms a layer of dust[11]. So boric acid adheres to their legs when the insects move across the powder. Hence, they may ingest the poison when the insects groom themselves. This will causes death due to starvation and dehydration after 3-10 days[9]. However, the insecticide mechanism of boric acid on insects has not been satisfactorily developed. Some hypotheses has been suggested including death by starvation owing to abrasive effect on the cuticle then cause destruction or slow drying of foregut cells[12, 13].
Besides that, when boric acid used as an herbicide, it desiccates or disrupts the photosynthesis system in plants. Hence, boric acid is normally used to suppress algae in swimming pools and sewage systems[8]. On the other hand, as a fungicide, the fungicidal properties of boric acid prevent the production of conidia or asexual spores of the fungi; hence, it suppresses the growth of fungi. Therefore, boric acid is used as wood preservative in wood industry such as lumber and timber products that controls decay producing fungi[9,14].
Boric acid is reported to be used as food preservatives in some foods and food products. Boric acid is used for preserving meats, meat products, caviar and dairy products[15]. This is because boric acid is able to inhibit the growth of microorganism, therefore, the preserved food can stay fresh and longer[16]. Moreover, according to Yiu et al. (2008)[17], boric acid was added to some food products to control starch gelatinization, as well as enhance the color, texture and flavor of the food.


  1. W. G. Woods, An introduction to boron: history, sources, uses and chemistry, Environ. Health Perspect. 102(7), 5--11 (1994).
  2. D. J. Fort, Adverse reproductive and developmental effects in Xenopus from insufficient boron, Biol. Trace Element Res. (current vol).
  3. C. D. Eckert, Essentiality of boron for vertebrate embryonic development in zebrafish and trout, Biol. Trace Element Res. (current vol.).
  4. C. L. Keen, Effects of very low boron exposure on rat development, Biol. Trace Element Res. (current vol.).
  5. F. H. Nielsen, The saga of boron in food: from a banished food preservative to a beneficial nutrient for humans, Curr. Topics Plant Biochem. Physiol. 10, 274 (1991).
  6. C. J. Rainey, R. E. Christensen, L. A. Nyquist, P. L. Strong, and J. R. Coughlin, Boron daily intake from the American diet, FASEB J. 10, A785 (abstract no. 4536) (1996).
  7. Di Renzo, F., G. Cappelletti, M.L. Broccia, E. Giavini and E. Menegola, 2007. Boric acid inhibits embryonic histone deacetylases: A suggested mechanism to explain boric acid-related teratogenicity. Toxicol. Applied Pharmacol., 220: 178-185.
  8. Cox, C., 2004. Boric acid and borates. J. Pesticide Reform, 24: 10-15.
  9. Woods, W.G., 1994. An introduction to boron: History, sources, uses and chemistry. Environ. Health Perspect., 102: 5-11. PMID: 7889881
  10. United States Environmental Protection Agency, 1993. Boric Acid. United States Environmental Protection Agency. Washington, DC.
  11. United States Environmental Protection Agency, 1996. Report of the food quality protection act (FQPA) tolerance reassessment eligibility decision (TRED) for boric acid/sodium borate salts. United States Environmental Protection Agency.
  12. Habes, D., S. Morakchi, N. Aribi, J.P. Farine and N. Soltani, 2006. Boric acid toxicity to the German cockroach, Blattella germanica: Alterations in midgut structure and acetylcholinesterase and glutathione S-transferase activity. Pesticide Biochem. Physiol., 84: 17-24.
  13. Cochran, D.G., 1995. Toxic effects of boric acid on the German cockroach. Cell. Mol. Life Sci., 51: 561-563.
  14. Clausen, C.A. and V. Yang, 2007. Protecting wood from mould, decay and termites with multicomponent biocide systems. Int. Biodeteriorat. Biodegradat., 59: 20-24.
  15. Arslan, M., M. Topaktas and E. Rencuzogullari, 2008. The effects of boric acid on sister chromatid exchanges and chromosome aberrations in cultured human lymphocytes. Cytotechnology, 56: 91-96.
  16. Normah, A., K.A. Ku Hasnah and M.H. Zainab, 1984. Penyalahgunaan asid borik dalam makanan. Teknol. Makanan, 3: 54-56.
  17. Yiu, P.H., J. See., A. Rajan and C.F.J. Bong. 2008. Boric acid levels in fresh noodles and fish ball. Am. J. Agric. Biol. Sci., 3: 476-481.
  18. J. S. Schou, J. A. Jansen, and B. Aggerbeck, Human pharmacokinetics and safety of boric acid, Arch. Toxicol. 7, 232-235 (1984).
  19. J. A. Jansen, J. S. Schou, and B. Aggerbeck, Gastrointestinal absorption and in vitro release of boric acid from water-emulsifying ointments, Food Chem. Toxicol. 22, 49-53 (1984).
  20. C. Job, Absorption and excretion of orally administered boron, Z. Angew. Bader-und Klimaheilkunde 20, 137-142 (1973).
  21. H. I. Maibach, In vivo percutaneous absorption of boric acid, borax, and disodium octaborate tetrahydrate in humans, Biol. Trace Element Res. (current vol.).
  22. B. Friis-Hansen, B. Aggerbeck, and J. A. Jansen, Unaffected blood boron levels in newborn infants treated with a boric acid ointment, Food Chem. Toxicol. 20, 451-454 (1982).
  23. K. H. Beyer, W. F. Bergfeld, W. O. Berndt, R. K. Boutewell, W. W. Carlton, D. K. Hoffman, et al., Final report on the safety assessment of sodium borate and boric acid, ]. Am. Coil. Toxicol. 2(7), 87-125 (1983).
  24. G. Stuttgen, T. Siebel, and B. Aggerbeck, Absorption of boric acid through human skin depending on the type of vehicle, Arch. Dermatol. Res. 272, 21-29 (1982).
  25. G. V. Alexander, R. E. Nusbaum, and N. S. MacDonald, The boron and lithium content of human bones, ]. Biol. Chem. 192, 489-496 (1951).
  26. R. M. Forbes, A. R. Cooper, and H. H. Mitchell, On the occurrence of beryllium, boron, cobalt, and mercury in human tissues, J. Biol. Chem. 209, 857-864 (1954).
  27. N. L. Ward, The determination of boron in biological materials by neutron irradiation and prompt gamma-ray spectrometry, J. Radioanalytical Nuclear Chem. 110(2), 633-639 (1987).
  28. J. Emsley, The Elements, Clarendon, Oxford, p. 32 (1989)
  29. MDC Legal Advisers, 2004. Food Act and Regulation: All Amendment up to April, 2004: Act 281. MDC Publisher Sdn. Bhd. Kuala Lumpur, ISBN: 967-70- 0808-0, pp: 394.
  30. Siti-Mizura, S., E.S. Tee and H.E. Ooi, 1991. Determination of boric acid in foods: Comparative study of three methods. J. Sci. Food Agric., 55: 261-268.
  31. Yiu, P.H., J. See., A. Rajan and C.F.J. Bong. 2008. Boric acid levels in fresh noodles and fish ball. Am. J. Agric. Biol. Sci., 3: 476-481. 32.
  32. Toxicity Litovitz, T.L., W. Klein-Schwartz, G.M. Oderda and B.F. Schmitz, 1988. Clinical manifestations of toxicity in a series of 784 boric acid ingestions.Am. J. Emerg. Med., 6: 209-213.
  33. Baker, D.M. and S.C. Bogema, 1986. Ingestion of boric acid by infants. Am. J. Emergency Med., 4: 358-361.
  34. Kot, F.S., 2009. Boron sources, speciation and its potential impact on health. Rev. Environ. Sci. Biotechnol., 8: 3-28.
  35. Moseman, R.F., 1994. Chemical disposition of boron in animals and humans. Environ. Health Perspect., 102: 113-117.


BA given orally is readily and completely absorbed in humans and animals. In adult human volunteers, Schou et al.[18] found 94% of a single oral dose of 500 mg BA (131 mg B) was excreted via the urine. Jansen et al.[19] evaluated the absorption of a single aqueous dose of 750 mg of BA in a group of six male volunteers; more than 92% of the BA was excreted in the urine. A similar degree of oral absorption based on urinary excretion of B was observed in volunteers drinking curative spa waters with a high B content, providing a daily dose of approx 100 mg B for 2 wk[20]. There is negligible absorption of BA across intact skin in humans and animals. Maibach[21] reported minimal dermal absorption of BA in human volunteers. Earlier studies showed little evidence of dermal absorption in human infants[22] and adults[23]. Dermal absorption across non-intact skin varied with the vehicle used; greater absorption was observed with aqueous-based vehicles compared to oil-based vehicles (e.g., ointments)[24]. Only traces of boric acid in ointment penetrated the skin of infants with moderate diaper rash.
BA is distributed similarly in humans and animals. It is rapidly distributed throughout body water. After administration of BA, B levels in soft tissues are equivalent to those found in plasma, whereas bone B levels appear to be higher than those found in plasma or soft tissues. In humans, a greater concentration of B in bone was reported relative to other tissues. Bone B concentrations were determined on 116 ashed samples from 33 human cadavers[25, 26]. More recently, Ward[27] examined B concentrations using a more sophisticated neutron activation analytical technique in a variety of human tissues, including bone, from 14 normal individuals and 18 individuals with rheumatoid arthritis. High B levels were found in bone, hair, and teeth.
BA is not metabolized in humans or animals. The metabolism of BA by biological systems is not possible owing to the high energy requirements (523 kJ/mol) needed to break the B----O bond[28]. In both humans and animals, BA is excreted unchanged in the urine regardless of the route of administration. It is rapidly excreted, with a half-life of < 24 h in humans and animals. BA is slowly eliminated from bone.
In humans, 99% of a single iv dose of BA was excreted in the urine, and the half-life was estimated to be 21 h, based on a three-compartment pharmacokinetic model[19]. In another study by the same investigators, 94% of an oral dose of BA (aqueous solution) was recovered in the urine of a group of male volunteers, and more than 50% of the oral dose was eliminated in the first 24 h, consistent with the 21-h half-life in the iv study[19].
Because of boric acid contains cumulative toxicity, FAO/WHO Expert Committee declared that boric acid is unsafe to use as food additives. Even though Ministry of Health Malaysia[29] does not allow boric acid to be used as a food additive, however, it has been reported in some of the local foods in Malaysia such as yellow noodle and fish ball[30]. Moreover, boric acid is harmful to human health if consumed in higher amount. However, due to unawareness of the risk of boric acid, it is continued to be used in the production of food especially noodles and some processed seafood such as fish ball[31]. Boric acid normally used for preservation of food products. It can cause to health problem if the food containing boric acid was ingested by human as boric acid and borates are toxic to cell. Hence, it is deleterious to health and its usage is not recommended[31]. For new-born baby, the possible lethal doses are in between 3-6 g, whereas 15-20 g total for adults[32]. The common symptoms from several incidents of boric acid poisoning included coughing, eye irritation, vomiting and oral irritation[33]. However, the toxicity mechanisms of boron compound remain unclear (Kot, 2009). According to Moseman (1994)[34], the usual amount of boron in urine, blood and soft tissues, normally in the range below 0.05 mg kg−1 and do not above 10 mg kg−1. Some boric acid poisoning cases reported that as high as 2 g kg−1 boric acid was found in liver tissue and brain[34, 35].


Boron (B), the fifth element in the periodic chart, is ubiquitous in the environment, where it is found combined with O to form compounds called inorganic borates (e.g., borax). Natural sources of borates in the environment include soils, rocks, surface and ocean waters, and the atmosphere.
B in the form of borates has long been recognized as an essential plant micronutrient for the growth and viability of plants. Recently, there has been a growing body of evidence that B may be an essential element for frogs, fish, rats, and humans, as well as for plants[1-5]. The major sources of B exposure are diet and drinking water. Fruits, vegetables, and nuts are especially rich in B. Rainey et al.[6] recently studied daily dietary B intake, evaluating the food consumption records of over 25,000 Americans over several days. The median, mean, and 95 percentile B intake for all participants were 0.76, 0.93, and 2.4 mg B/d, respectively.
Boric acid (H3BO3) is a boron compound that is soluble and circulates in plasma[7]. It is a colorless, water-soluble, salt-like white powder, which have been used as pesticide since 1948. Normally, it is used to kill mites, insects, fungi and algae. For instances fleas, cockroaches, termites and wood decay fungi[8, 9]. Borate chemicals and boric acid have been used extensively for industrial purposes and its salts have been used for medication as an antiseptic to kill bacteria and fungi. Normally, it is used in the form of powder and liquid; depending to the target and conditions of pest, boric acid might applied as a spray or aerosol, as well as in the form of tablets, granule, pellets, paste or crystalline[10].


Pharmaceutic necessity.



According to Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) - Sixth revised edition

Version: 1.0

Creation Date: Aug 18, 2017

Revision Date: Aug 18, 2017


1.1 GHS Product identifier

Product name Boric acid

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1.3 Recommended use of the chemical and restrictions on use

Identified uses For industry use only. Enzymes and Enzyme Stabilizers
Uses advised against no data available

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The boron element possesses a range of different effects on living beings. It is essential to beneficial at low concentrations, but toxic at excessive concentrations. Recently, some boron-based compounds have been identified as promising molecules against Trypanosoma brucei, the causative agent ...detailed

Evaluation of the antimicrobial and intestinal integrity properties of Boric acid (cas 11113-50-1) in broiler chickens infected with Salmonella enteritidis: Proof of concept07/25/2019

The objectives of the present study were to evaluate the antimicrobial effect of boric acid (BA) on Salmonella enteritidis colonization, intestinal permeability, total intestinal IgA levels, and cecal microbiota composition in broiler chickens. For this purpose, sixty day-old-chicks were randoml...detailed

Spectroscopic and conductometric behavior of Boric acid (cas 11113-50-1) in water and in an aprotic polar solvent07/24/2019

IR and Raman measurements were carried out for boric acid in water and DMSO. IR-active bands at 1410 and 1150 cm−1, which have been related to the E′ representation, were not observed in the Raman spectrum of the acid in water. At the same time, the 1060 cm−1 band, which should be Raman-active ...detailed

Pre-storage exogenous application of Boric acid (cas 11113-50-1) extends storability and maintains quality of pear fruits07/22/2019

Present studies were carried out to investigate the potential of boric acid to extend storage the life of pear (Pyrus pyrifolia L.) cv. ‘Patharnakh’ fruits. Pear fruits were dipped in aqueous solutions of different concentrations (0- water dip, 1–3%) of boric acid for 5 min and thereafter sto...detailed

Effect of Boric acid (cas 11113-50-1) content on the properties of magnesium phosphate cement07/20/2019

Magnesium phosphate cements (MPC) are materials prepared by reacting magnesium oxide with water-soluble phosphates such as mono-ammonium dihydrogen phosphate (ADP), which solidify at ambient temperature through the formation of hydrated phases in the material. A great advantage of these ceramics...detailed

Ceramic nanofiltration and membrane distillation hybrid membrane processes for the purification and recycling of Boric acid (cas 11113-50-1) from simulative radioactive waste water07/21/2019

To reduce the emission of radioactive waste water and reuse high-value 10B-rich nuclear-grade boric acid from a nuclear power plant, a two-step membrane process was proposed based on the combination of two types of ceramic membranes. First, a ceramic nanofiltration membrane was used to purify th...detailed

Antifibrotic Effect of Boric acid (cas 11113-50-1) in Rats with Epidural Fibrosis07/19/2019

BackgroundEpidural fibrosis is a major problem after spine surgery, with some patients having recurrent symptoms secondary to excessive formation of scar tissue resulting in neurologic compression. We used a rat laminectomy model to determine if topical application of boric acid could be helpful...detailed

Removal of nuclides and Boric acid (cas 11113-50-1) from simulated radioactive wastewater by forward osmosis07/18/2019

In this paper, the removal of nuclides and boric acid from the simulated borate-containing radioactive wastewater was studied using forward osmosis (FO) process. The effect of membrane materials and their orientation, as well as borate concentration on the flux and retentions of nuclides and bor...detailed

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