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EU: ECVAM validates the h-CLAT assay for skin sensitization

The JRC has validated and recommended a new method, not based on animal testing, which identifies chemicals that can trigger skin allergies, estimated to affect already 20% of the population in Europe.

The human Cell Line Activation Test (h-CLAT) has been developed by industry and validated by the JRC managed Eu­ropean Union Reference Laboratory for Alternatives to Ani­mal Testing (EURL ECVAM). It will help the identification of chemicals that can lead to allergic contact dermatitis (ACD), one of the most common occupational diseases, and therefore allow reducing the number of animals currently used for this purpose. So far the potential of chemicals to induce skin aller­gies was tested on mice and guinea-pigs.


Following the validation process, ECVAM now recommends the use of h-CLAT in the context of integrated approaches to testing and assessment, i.e., together with data from other non-animal methods and computer model (in silico) predictions.


The recommendation aims to inform scientific discussions at OECD in view of developing an OECD Test Guideline on the h-CLAT. The OECD Test Guidelines are internationally agreed test methods used by government, industry and independent laboratories. They are used to determine the safety of chemicals and chemical preparations, including pesticides and industrial chemicals.


Two other recommendations issued by EURL ECVAM on non-animal methods for skin sensitization testing, the DPRA and KeratinoSensTM, recently led to the adoption of these methods as OECD Test Guidelines 442C and 442D (see other News).




March 2, 2015

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