We are delighted to announce that this month, the scientific journal Regulatory Toxicology and Pharmacology has published the results of a groundbreaking survey by scientists from the BUAV.
The report demonstrates the redundancy of a specific animal test within a package of tests that are commonly conducted for regulatory purposes for industrial chemicals. Identifying these types of redundancies is an important way to reduce animal testing.
For example, under REACH, the EU’s chemical legislation, the results of both a 28-day and a 90-day repeated dose test in rodents is currently required for a large proportion of chemicals. Using the online REACH database, we conducted a search for substances for which there was already both a 28-day and a 90-day study and found that in cases of low toxicity in the 28-day study, there was no added value in conducting a 90-day study. Our report concludes that, when also taking evidence of low toxicity from other existing data into account, the predictivity of no toxicity in the 90-day study increases to 95%, rendering it completely redundant.
In other words, if substances are not toxic to animals in a 28-day study they have a 95% chance of not being toxic in the 90-day study. Avoiding the 90-day study for the remaining REACH substances will save approximately 50,000 animals and 50 million Euros alone without jeopardising human health. We are hoping that our results will encourage both regulatory authorities and chemical companies to consider if the 90-day test can be waived on a case-by-case for chemicals with a low toxicity profile.
The work was funded through the BUAV Charitable Trust and BUAV scientists worked with our REACH consultancy firm TSGE Consulting Ltd. The paper is open access and can be found here: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0273230014000713
Taylor, K. Andrew, D.J. and Rego, L. The added value of the 90-day repeated dose oral toxicity test for industrial chemicals with a low (sub)acute toxicity profile in a high quality dataset. (2014). Regulatory Toxicology and Pharmacology, 69(3): 320-332