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The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), rendered PCBs as definite carcinogens in humans. Many rivers and buildings including schools, parks, and other sites are contaminated with PCBs, and there have been contaminations of food supplies with the substances.
Some PCBs share a structural similarity and toxic mode of action with dioxin.
As the degree of chlorination increases, melting point and lipophilicity increase, and vapour pressure and water solubility decrease.
They can generate extremely toxic dibenzodioxins and dibenzofurans through partial oxidation.
An exception is Aroclor 1016, which also has 12 carbon atoms, but has 42% chlorine by mass.
hydraulic fluids, lubricating and cutting oils, and the like.In PCBs, some of the hydrogen atoms in biphenyl are replaced by chlorine atoms.There are 209 different chemical compounds in which one to ten chlorine atoms can replace hydrogen atoms.The utility of PCBs is based largely on their chemical stability, including low flammability and high dielectric constant.In an electric arc, PCBs generate incombustible gases.