Polychlorinated biphenyl

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Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs; CAS number 1336-36-3 ) are a class of organic compounds with 1 to 10 chlorine atoms attached to biphenyl, which is a molecule composed of two benzene rings. The chemical formula for PCBs is C12H10-xClx. PCBs were widely used for many applications, especially as dielectric fluids in transformers, capacitors, and coolants. Due to PCB's toxicity and classification as a persistent organic pollutant, PCB production was banned by the United States Congress in 1979 and by the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants in 2001. Concerns about the toxicity of PCBs are largely based on compounds within this group which share a structural similarity and toxic mode of action with dioxin. Toxic effects such as endocrine disruption and neurotoxicity are also associated with other compounds within the group.

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