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UK: QSAR resource to reduce animal tests carried out under REACH

Seeking to maximize the value of computational modeling in avoiding animal testing for the European Union̓s Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH), the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) Foundation has produced a free resource for potential registrants, identifying sources of information and expertise on the use of Quantitative Structure Activity Relationships (QSARs). The short brochure “QSARs and REACH: A Guide to Sources of Information and Advice” was produced in consultation with leading experts in the field and lists publicly available online resources and selected contact points for individuals and organizations that can offer support to REACH registrants and consultants on the use of QSARs.

QSARs predict chemical behavior directly from chemical structure and simulate adverse effects in cells, tissues and lab animals, minimizing the need to use animal tests to comply with regulatory requirements for human health and ecotoxicology endpoints. The REACH regulation promotes the use of alternative methods and states that animal testing should be a last resort. The use of QSAR is specifically encouraged. However, while QSARs have already been used in many registrations, it is clear from the European Chemicals Agency̓s (ECHA) 2011 report, “The Use of Alternatives to Testing on Animals for the REACH Regulation”, that many opportunities to use them have been missed and that, in some cases, registrants have not submitted QSAR data in accordance with REACH̓s requirements, leading to potential failure at the REACH compliance check, additional costs, and increased animal testing. 

The list was compiled by PETA in consultation with PETA US and contacts within industry and academia, and selection and inclusion was based entirely on expert judgment – the list contains no paid advertising. The resource is currently being distributed gratis to chemical companies, consultants, and other stakeholders and is available online at

Jessica Sandler
Posted on
February 27, 2012

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