Metabolomics in toxicology and preclinical research.

BASF SE, Experimental Toxicology and Ecology, Ludwigshafen, Germany.
ALTEX 01/2013; 30(2):209-25.
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Metabolomics, the comprehensive analysis of metabolites in a biological system, provides detailed information about the biochemical/physiological status of a biological system, and about the changes caused by chemicals. Metabolomics analysis is used in many fields, ranging from the analysis of the physiological status of genetically modified organisms in safety science to the evaluation of human health conditions. In toxicology, metabolomics is the -omics discipline that is most closely related to classical knowledge of disturbed biochemical pathways. It allows rapid identification of the potential targets of a hazardous compound. It can give information on target organs and often can help to improve our understanding regarding the mode-of-action of a given compound. Such insights aid the discovery of biomarkers that either indicate pathophysiological conditions or help the monitoring of the efficacy of drug therapies. The first toxicological applications of metabolomics were for mechanistic research, but different ways to use the technology in a regulatory context are being explored. Ideally, further progress in that direction will position the metabolomics approach to address the challenges of toxicology of the 21st century. To address these issues, scientists from academia, industry, and regulatory bodies came together in a workshop to discuss the current status of applied metabolomics and its potential in the safety assessment of compounds. We report here on the conclusions of three working groups addressing questions regarding 1) metabolomics for in vitro studies 2) the appropriate use of metabolomics in systems toxicology, and 3) use of metabolomics in a regulatory context.

1 Follower
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Developmental toxicity in vitro assays have hitherto been established as stand-alone systems, based on a limited number of toxicants. Within the embryonic stem cell-based novel alternative tests project, we developed a test battery framework that allows inclusion of any developmental toxicity assay and that explores the responses of such test systems to a wide range of drug-like compounds. We selected 28 compounds, including several biologics (e.g., erythropoietin), classical pharmaceuticals (e.g., roflumilast) and also six environmental toxicants. The chemical, toxicological and clinical data of this screen library were compiled. In order to determine a non-cytotoxic concentration range, cytotoxicity data were obtained for all compounds from HEK293 cells and from murine embryonic stem cells. Moreover, an estimate of relevant exposures was provided by literature data mining. To evaluate feasibility of the suggested test framework, we selected a well-characterized assay that evaluates 'migration inhibition of neural crest cells.' Screening at the highest non-cytotoxic concentration resulted in 11 hits (e.g., geldanamycin, abiraterone, gefitinib, chlorpromazine, cyproconazole, arsenite). These were confirmed in concentration-response studies. Subsequent pharmacokinetic modeling indicated that triadimefon exerted its effects at concentrations relevant to the in vivo situation, and also interferon-β and polybrominated diphenyl ether showed effects within the same order of magnitude of concentrations that may be reached in humans. In conclusion, the test battery framework can identify compounds that disturb processes relevant for human development and therefore may represent developmental toxicants. The open structure of the strategy allows rich information to be generated on both the underlying library, and on any contributing assay.
    Archives of Toxicology 04/2014; DOI:10.1007/s00204-014-1231-9 · 5.08 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: A major problem in developmental neurotoxicity (DNT) risk assessment is the lack of toxicological hazard information for most compounds. Therefore, new approaches are being considered to provide adequate experimental data that allow regulatory decisions. This process requires a matching of regulatory needs on the one hand and the opportunities provided by new test systems and methods on the other hand. Alignment of academically and industrially driven assay development with regulatory needs in the field of DNT is a core mission of the International STakeholder NETwork (ISTNET) in DNT testing. The first meeting of ISTNET was held in Zurich on 23-24 January 2014 in order to explore the concept of adverse outcome pathway (AOP) to practical DNT testing. AOPs were considered promising tools to promote test systems development according to regulatory needs. Moreover, the AOP concept was identified as an important guiding principle to assemble predictive integrated testing strategies (ITSs) for DNT. The recommendations on a road map towards AOP-based DNT testing is considered a stepwise approach, operating initially with incomplete AOPs for compound grouping, and focussing on key events of neurodevelopment. Next steps to be considered in follow-up activities are the use of case studies to further apply the AOP concept in regulatory DNT testing, making use of AOP intersections (common key events) for economic development of screening assays, and addressing the transition from qualitative descriptions to quantitative network modelling.
    Archive für Toxikologie 01/2015; 89(2). DOI:10.1007/s00204-015-1464-2 · 5.08 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Toxicity testing typically involves studying adverse health outcomes in animals subjected to high doses of toxicants with subsequent extrapolation to expected human responses at lower doses. The low-throughput of current toxicity testing approaches (which are largely the same for industrial chemicals, pesticides and drugs) has led to a backlog of more than 80,000 chemicals to which human beings are potentially exposed whose potential toxicity remains largely unknown. Employing new testing strategies that employ the use of predictive, high-throughput cell-based assays (of human origin) to evaluate perturbations in key pathways, referred as pathways of toxicity, and to conduct targeted testing against those pathways, we can begin to greatly accelerate our ability to test the vast "storehouses" of chemical compounds using a rational, risk-based approach to chemical prioritization, and provide test results that are more predictive of human toxicity than current methods. The NIH Transformative Research Grant project Mapping the Human Toxome by Systems Toxicology aims at developing the tools for pathway mapping, annotation and validation as well as the respective knowledge base to share this information. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    Basic & Clinical Pharmacology & Toxicology 01/2014; 115(1). DOI:10.1111/bcpt.12198 · 2.29 Impact Factor


Available from
May 28, 2014