Dioxins are a class of 75 chlorinated aromatic hydrocarbons that vary widely in their toxicity to humans. Dioxin toxicity is measured by Toxic Equivalent Factor (TEF) for which the standard of 1.0 is TCDD, or tetrachlorodibenzo–p–dioxin, one of the most toxic substances known. Dioxins are chemically and toxicologically related to chemicals known as furans, and some of the polychlorinated biphenols, or PCBs. Dioxins have no commercial application and can be produced as byproducts of manufacturing processes involving chlorine or fire in the presence of chlorine and complex carbon molecules.

Dioxins are more soluble in fat than water, meaning they bind to organic matter and bioaccumulate. Human exposure to dioxin is generally through consuming animal-based foods like meat, dairy, and eggs, making exposures widespread. Dioxins are ...

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