chapter  12
Genotoxicity
Pages 50

Genotoxicity encompasses all the potential means by which the genetic material of higher organisms may be damaged, with the potential for resulting serious consequences. Most forms of genotoxicity are expressions of mutagenicity-the induction of DNA damage and other genetic alterations, with binding to, and changes in, one or a few DNA base pairs (gene mutations). Elastogenicity, that is, gross changes in chromosomal structure (i.e., chromosomal aberrations) or in chromosome numbers, represents a different class of genotoxic changes, for which practical thresholds of effect are identiable.