EURL-Ecvam publishes status report on alternative methods

The European Commission Joint Research Centre’s EU Reference Laboratory for Alternatives to Animal Testing (EURL Ecvam) has published a “status report”, summarising all of its activities between May 2014 and September this year. In this time, EURL-Ecvam has developed adverse outcome pathways (AOPs) relevant to neurotoxicity, toxicity via disruption of the endocrine system and liver toxicity. Most of these have been added to an AOP knowledge base-wiki, developed by the JRC, in conjunction with the US EPA and the OECD. In March 2014, EURL-Ecvam launched a public web survey, asking groups to submit test methods related to the clearance of chemicals from the liver (human hepatic metabolic clearance or HHMC). Nine test facilities submitted 15 HHMC methods, aiming to measure in vitro the rate at which a test chemical is metabolised by a human liver-based test system. EURL-Ecvam has selected three of the most highly ranked protocols, all of which use human liver cells. They will be used to develop a standard operating procedure to help predict metabolic clearance of chemicals in vivo. The laboratory is also working on an in vitro integrated testing strategy (ITS) to identify possible neurotoxicity. The proposed ITS will be based on a combination of human cell models and endpoints, suited to high-throughput methods. In vitro assays will be “anchored” to key events, identified in AOPs for neurotoxicity. In total, EURL-ECVAM has assessed 15 alternative test methods since May 2014, covering fish toxicity, genotoxicity, toxicokinetics, teratogenicity, skin sensitisation and skin and eye irritation. The report also details EURL-Ecvam’s activities as part of the EU alternative testing project, Seurat-1. Further Information is available at: Report (in full)

Chemical Watch, 15 October 2015 ; ;