Di-n-butyl phthalate

DnBP; formula: C6H4[COO(CH2)3CH3]2 or C16H22O4; CAS Registry Number: 84-74-2
Structure of di-n-butyl phthalate (DBP)
Source: PubChem

Short-chain phthalate

Dibutyl phthalate is a plasticizer with coagulating properties which was applied for instance in polyacrylate plastics and poly acetate dispersions. In combination with other plasticizers it was used as gellant in processing of so-called plastisols.

DBP is present e.g. in floor coverings, adhesives, nitrocellulose lacquers, gellants, and body care products like hair sprays, deodorants and perfumes. It is a good solvent for pesticides and oil soluble paints. Furthermore, DBP was used for encapsulation of drugs to resist gastric juice.
Due to its wide use, DBP is ubiquitous in the environment. It is, however, degraded relatively fast.

DBP is suspected to act as endocrine disruptor and to be toxic on reproduction and development.
It is very toxic for aquatic organisms.

In the European Union (EU) the general use of DBP without special authorization is prohibited.

For the Environmental Specimen Bank not the parent compound DBP itself is analysed in human specimens but its major metabolites.


MnBP Mono-n-butyl phthalate is the primary metabolite of DnBP resulting from the elimination of one butyl group.


Students Student groups with an even number of female and male students at the age of 20 to 29.

Sampling area

Sampling sites (humans) 4 university cities as sampling areas.

Sampling period

1988 - 2015