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Record Information
Creation Date2014-09-25 19:13:14 UTC
Update Date2016-11-09 01:09:14 UTC
Accession NumberCHEM003912
Common NameTritium
ClassSmall Molecule
DescriptionTritium (also known as hydrogen-3) is a radioactive isotope of hydrogen. The nucleus of tritium (sometimes called a triton) contains one proton and two neutrons, whereas the nucleus of protium (by far the most abundant hydrogen isotope) contains one proton and no neutrons. Naturally occurring tritium is extremely rare on Earth, where trace amounts are formed by the interaction of the atmosphere with cosmic rays. The name of this isotope is formed from the Greek word "tritos" meaning "third".
Contaminant Sources
  • IARC Carcinogens Group 1
  • T3DB toxins
Contaminant Type
  • Natural Compound
  • Pollutant
  • Radioactive
Chemical Structure
Hydrogen 3MeSH
Chemical FormulaH2
Average Molecular Mass6.032 g/mol
Monoisotopic Mass6.032 g/mol
CAS Registry Number10028-17-8
IUPAC Name(³H₂)dihydrogen
Traditional Nametritium
InChI IdentifierInChI=1S/H2/h1H/i1+2T
Chemical Taxonomy
Description belongs to the class of inorganic compounds known as other non-metal hydrides. These are inorganic compounds in which the heaviest atom bonded to a hydrogen atom is belongs to the class of 'other non-metals'.
KingdomInorganic compounds
Super ClassHomogeneous non-metal compounds
ClassOther non-metal organides
Sub ClassOther non-metal hydrides
Direct ParentOther non-metal hydrides
Alternative ParentsNot Available
  • Other non-metal hydride
Molecular FrameworkNot Available
External Descriptors
Biological Properties
StatusDetected and Not Quantified
Cellular Locations
  • Cell surface
  • Endoplasmic reticulum
  • Extracellular
  • Mitochondrion
  • Nucleolus
  • Nucleoplasm
  • Plasma Membrane
  • Ribosome
  • Synaptic Vesicle
Biofluid LocationsNot Available
Tissue LocationsNot Available
EicosanoidsNot AvailableNot Available
Homologous recombinationNot Availablemap03440
Oxidative phosphorylationNot Availablemap00190
Cell cycleNot Availablemap04110
ApoptosisNot Availablemap04210
Thyroid hormone synthesisSMP00716 Not Available
PhenothiazinesNot AvailableNot Available
Non-homologous end-joiningNot Availablemap03450
Dna replicationNot Availablemap03030
Carbon MetabolismNot AvailableNot Available
Biosynthesis Of Amino AcidsNot AvailableNot Available
Abc transportersNot Availablemap02010
ApplicationsNot Available
Biological RolesNot Available
Chemical RolesNot Available
Physical Properties
StateNot Available
Experimental Properties
Melting PointNot Available
Boiling PointNot Available
SolubilityNot Available
Predicted Properties
Physiological Charge0ChemAxon
Hydrogen Acceptor Count0ChemAxon
Hydrogen Donor Count0ChemAxon
Polar Surface Area0 ŲChemAxon
Rotatable Bond Count0ChemAxon
Refractivity0 m³·mol⁻¹ChemAxon
Polarizability0.74 ųChemAxon
Number of Rings0ChemAxon
Rule of FiveYesChemAxon
Ghose FilterYesChemAxon
Veber's RuleYesChemAxon
MDDR-like RuleYesChemAxon
Spectrum TypeDescriptionSplash Key
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 10V, Positivesplash10-0udi-9000000000-0595c445077141efd7acView in MoNA
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 20V, Positivesplash10-0udi-9000000000-0595c445077141efd7acView in MoNA
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 40V, Positivesplash10-0udi-9000000000-0595c445077141efd7acView in MoNA
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 10V, Negativesplash10-0udi-9000000000-cbcf030cfea82ec88da3View in MoNA
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 20V, Negativesplash10-0udi-9000000000-cbcf030cfea82ec88da3View in MoNA
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 40V, Negativesplash10-0udi-9000000000-cbcf030cfea82ec88da3View in MoNA
Toxicity Profile
Route of ExposureInhalation; ingestion; dermal
Mechanism of ToxicityTritium is an isotope of hydrogen, which allows it to readily bind to hydroxyl radicals, forming tritiated water (HTO), and to carbon atoms. Since tritium is a low energy beta emitter, it is not dangerous externally (its beta particles are unable to penetrate the skin), but it is a radiation hazard when inhaled, ingested via food or water, or absorbed through the skin. Beta particles are able to penetrate living matter to a certain extent and can change the structure of struck molecules. In most cases, such change can be considered to be damage, with results possibly as severe as cancer or death. If the struck molecule is DNA, it can cause spontaneous mutation. (Wikipedia)
MetabolismTritiated water (HTO) has a short biological half-life in the human body of 7 to 14 days, which both reduces the total effects of single-incident ingestion and precludes long-term bioaccumulation of HTO from the environment. Biological half life of tritiated water in human body, which is a measure of body water turn over, varies with season. Studies on biological half life of occupational radiation workers for free water tritium in the coastal region of Karnataka, India show that the biological half life in winter season is twice that of the summer season. (Wikipedia)
Toxicity ValuesThe median lethal dose (LD50) of tritium assimilated by the body is estimated to be 370 GBq (10 Ci). Higher doses can be tolerated with forced fluid intake to reduce the biological half life. (1)
Lethal DoseNot Available
Carcinogenicity (IARC Classification)1, carcinogenic to humans. (2)
Uses/SourcesTritium occurs naturally due to cosmic rays interacting with atmospheric gases. Tritium is produced in nuclear reactors by neutron activation of lithium-6. Tritium is also produced in heavy water-moderated reactors whenever a deuterium nucleus captures a neutron. Tritium is an uncommon product of the nuclear fission of uranium-235, plutonium-239, and uranium-233, with a production of about one atom per each 10,000 fissions. Tritium is used in self-powered lighting, nuclear weapons, and controlled nuclear fusion. It is also used in analytical chemistry as a radiolabel. (Wikipedia)
Minimum Risk LevelNot Available
Health EffectsCancer, possibly death.
SymptomsNot Available
TreatmentNot Available
Not Available
DrugBank IDNot Available
HMDB IDNot Available
FooDB IDNot Available
Phenol Explorer IDNot Available
KNApSAcK IDNot Available
BiGG IDNot Available
BioCyc IDNot Available
METLIN IDNot Available
PDB IDNot Available
Wikipedia LinkTritium
Chemspider IDNot Available
ChEBI ID29298
PubChem Compound ID24824
Kegg Compound IDNot Available
YMDB IDNot Available
ECMDB IDNot Available
Synthesis ReferenceNot Available
MSDSNot Available
General ReferencesNot Available