In its report on non-animal approaches, the ECHA highlights the potential of alternative experimentation concepts and explains the outstanding challenges.
The ECHA authors state the alternative approaches are already considered standard methods for low-level endpoints. Especially where data and information on irritations and sensitivity of the skin and eyes that depend on a specific concentration is involved, such tests would meet the informational requirements of REACH, CLP, and BPR. Another ECHA report, The use of alternatives to testing on animals for the REACH Regulation, reaches the same conclusions. According to that report, the database of REACH registrations already contains information on more than 6,000 substances. Registrants generally use alternatives to animal experiments. The ECHA regards this development as a successful implementation of the 3R Principle: Replacement, Reduction, and Refinement.
But complex endpoints continue to make animal experimentation unavoidable when determining the toxicity of repeated doses and data on reproductive toxicity. The authors reached this conclusion after gathering and evaluating all the important information from external agencies and institutions. And in his introduction the former ECHA director Geert Dancet emphasizes that the report shows scientists the areas in which further research efforts are needed.
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