An evaluation of selected global (Q)SARs/expert systems for the prediction of skin sensitisation potential.
ABSTRACT Skin sensitisation potential is an endpoint that needs to be assessed within the framework of existing and forthcoming legislation. At present, skin sensitisation hazard is normally identified using in vivo test methods, the favoured approach being the local lymph node assay (LLNA). This method can also provide a measure of relative skin sensitising potency which is essential for assessing and managing human health risks. One potential alternative approach to skin sensitisation hazard identification is the use of (Quantitative) structure activity relationships ((Q)SARs) coupled with appropriate documentation and performance characteristics. This represents a major challenge. Current thinking is that (Q)SARs might best be employed as part of a battery of approaches that collectively provide information on skin sensitisation hazard. A number of (Q)SARs and expert systems have been developed and are described in the literature. Here we focus on three models (TOPKAT, Derek for Windows and TOPS-MODE), and evaluate their performance against a recently published dataset of 211 chemicals. The current strengths and limitations of one of these models is highlighted, together with modifications that could be made to improve its performance. Of the models/expert systems evaluated, none performed sufficiently well to act as a standalone tool for hazard identification.
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ABSTRACT: There is continued interest in, and imperatives for, the classification of contact allergens according to their relative skin sensitising potency. However, achieving that end can prove problematic, not least when there is an apparent lack of concordance between experimental assessments of potency and the prevalence allergic contact dermatitis as judged by clinical experience. For the purpose of exploring this issue, and illustrating the important considerations that are required to reach sound judgements about potency categorisation, the lower alkyl methacrylate esters (LAM) have been employed here as a case study. Although the sensitising potential of methyl methacrylate (MMA) has been reviewed previously, there is available new information that is relevant for assessment of skin sensitising potency. Moreover, for the purposes of this article, analyses have been extended to include also other LAM for which relevant data are available: ethyl methacrylate (EMA), n-butyl methacrylate (nBMA), isobutyl methacrylate (iBMA), and 2-ethylhexyl methacrylate (EHMA). In addressing the skin sensitising activity of these chemicals and in drawing conclusions regarding relative potency, a number of sources of information has been considered, including estimates of potency derived from local lymph node assay (LLNA) data, the results of guinea pig assays, and data derived from in silico methods and from recently developed in vitro approaches. Moreover, clinical experience of skin sensitisation of humans by LAM has also been evaluated. The conclusion drawn is that MMA and other LAM are contact allergens, but that none of these chemicals has any more than weak skin sensitising potency. We have also explored here the possible bases for this modest sensitising activity. Finally, the nature of exposure to LAM has been reviewed briefly and on the basis of that information, together with an understanding of skin sensitising potency, a risk assessment has been prepared.Regulatory Toxicology and Pharmacology 10/2014; 70(1). DOI:10.1016/j.yrtph.2014.06.013 · 2.14 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Regulatory frameworks within the European Union demand that chemical substances are investigated for their ability to induce sensitization, an adverse health effect caused by the human immune system in response to chemical exposure. A recent ban on the use of animal tests within the cosmetics industry has led to an urgent need for alternative animal-free test methods that can be used for assessment of chemical sensitizers. To date, no such alternative assay has yet completed formal validation. However, a number of assays are in development and the understanding of the biological mechanisms of chemical sensitization has greatly increased during the last decade. In this MiniReview, we aim to summarize and give our view on the recent progress of method development for alternative assessment of chemical sensitizers. We propose that integrated testing strategies should comprise complementary assays, providing measurements of a wide range of mechanistic events, to perform well-educated risk assessments based on weight of evidence.Basic & Clinical Pharmacology & Toxicology 01/2014; 115(1). DOI:10.1111/bcpt.12199 · 2.29 Impact Factor