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What Impact Do State Laws Against Animal Testing Have on The Skin Care Industry?

Animal testing for skin care products in the U.S. can be a highly-charged, emotional topic. There are many pros and cons on this procedure, with some states banning the process outright, without trying to find an alternative that would satisfy the needs of the industry’s human clients while appeasing the concerns of the animal rights activists. Although animal testing is not specifically required by the FDA for cosmetics, it has also not been implicitly banned at the federal level in the United States. A bipartisan Humane Cosmetics Act has been introduced in Congress and seeks to follow the example of the European Union by doing so. Until that law is enacted, the issue is currently being debated on a state by state basis.

In 2002, California politicians enacted legislation which made it the first state to prohibit using traditional animal testing methods for skin care products, when an alternative test that has been approved by the Inter-Agency Coordinating Committee for the Validation of Alternative Methods (ICCVAM) is available. Other states that have banned animal testing for cosmetic care products with similar restrictions include New Jersey, New York and Virginia. These bans did not prevent companies from marketing cosmetic products that had been tested on animals elsewhere; however, California also recently enacted legislation that will make it illegal as of January 1, 2020 to sell cosmetics, with minimal exceptions, that have been (or include ingredients that have been) tested on animals.

Ethical and legal considerations aside, animal testing results may not be reliable enough for companies that invest great sums of money in cosmetics research, marketing and production. Some animal species may respond differently to specific irritants, and test results can sometimes prove difficult to interpret. This may produce skewed results if they are extrapolated to human consumers. At the very least, manufacturers are attempting to reduce the number of animals involved and to refine the procedures used.

In light of all of this, how is an ethical manufacturer supposed to produce a product that is legal, effective and safe, and that appeals to a more socially aware marketplace? Fortunately, alternatives that do not involve the use of animal testing are becoming more available. These may involve human blood and tissue samples, artificial skin, or computer models which can deliver human-based results. These alternatives can actually produce results more quickly than long-term, animal-based tests, with the added benefit of being more reliable and cost-effective than results obtained through other means.

One area making great strides in the cosmetics industry is in vitro testing. This is being used to confirm the lack of certain toxic properties in cosmetic products, as well as their ingredients. It can safely be used to test product efficacy and receive regulatory approval. Examples of safer, in vitro test methods which represent the very best techniques that modern science has to offer include Irritection® and Corrositex® from InVitro International. The Irritection® Assay System allows users to predict the ocular and dermal irritancy of chemicals, mixtures and product formulations, while Corrositex® is used to determine chemical corrosivity. Corrositex® has also been approved for determining GHS/UN Packing Group classifications that are required for the storage and transport of corrosive substances.

About InVitro International: Headquartered in Placentia, CA, InVitro International was established in September 1985. The company is recognized as being a pioneer in the development and application of non-animal testing alternatives for irritation and skin toxicity testing. Its mission is to assist the cosmetics industry in the development and marketing of faster, simpler more cost effective product and environmental safety testing methodologies. Visit our website or call 800-246-8487 for further information on non-animal testing alternatives.

Cosmetic Testing: 3 Non-Animal Testing Alternatives

Throughout history, animal testing has been the primary tool used to determine whether certain chemicals are safe for use in humans and/or the environment. However, this method of testing poses several concerns. For example, animal testing is often harmful to the animal subjects involved, which is considered inhumane by some critics. In addition, animal testing is not always effective, providing results that may not translate to humans. Furthermore, animal testing is expensive.

All of these drawbacks have led researchers to look for alternatives to animal testing. Below are three viable alternatives that can be used to test chemicals for toxicity.

1. Human volunteers.

Tests performed on human volunteers translate much better into the general population than animal tests. Critics of this alternative point out the obvious risk to human volunteers. However, advances in technology allow researchers to test chemicals on humans with minimal levels of risk. One of the best methods available is known as “microdosing.” Microdosing involves giving a human volunteer a very small dose of a drug and then using advanced imaging techniques to watch the drug interact with the body. With regard to cosmetic testing, this method usually involves testing a small area of the skin and using advanced techniques to analyze the response.

2. Computer Models

Another alternative to animal testing is the computer model, which allows scientists to simulate the biology of the human body for the purposes of testing different chemicals. These sophisticated models can anticipate the way the body is most likely to react to a specific substance.
Computer models eliminate the need for testing on animals, and they don’t require human subjects. These models are also cost-effective and can be repeated many times without wasting resources. For example, one type of computer-based model known as “quantitative structure-activity relationships” can use data about existing chemicals to estimate the likelihood of toxicity for a new chemical.

3. In Vitro Testing

Another viable alternative to animal testing is known as “in vitro testing.” This method utilizes actual human cells to test the toxicity or irritation potential of specific chemicals.

For example, one type of in-vitro testing developed by researchers at Harvard involves the creation of microchips that contain human cells. Different types of human cells are used on these microchips to simulate the structure and function of specific organs or systems in the human body, such as the skin. Researchers can use these chips to test the reaction of specific body systems to a new chemical, thus reducing the need for animal testing. In the cosmetics industry, the cells used would mimic the function of human skin in order to test reactions to specific substances.

High-quality in vitro testing assays are already available to cosmetic companies. A prime example is the Ocular/Dermal Irritection® Assay System from InVitro International, which can provide accurate results in as little as 24 hours.

At this time, these alternatives cannot entirely replace animal testing. However, when used properly, they can reduce the need for animal tests, especially in the cosmetics industry. In many cases, these alternatives are also more cost-effective and accurate than animal testing, making them even more desirable to researchers. As alternatives to animal testing continue to become more sophisticated, it is likely that the need for animal tests will continue to decline.

Chemical Screening Software May Be More Effective than Animal Testing

For many decades, animals have been subjected to toxicity testing in order to determine whether certain compounds were safe for use in the environment or in humans. In many cases, this testing has led to severe and even deadly side effects for the animals in question. To prevent these negative outcomes, researchers have been searching for alternatives to animal testing. Recently, toxicologists have successfully developed a software program that may be more effective than animal testing, thus reducing the need for animal-based experiments.

About the Software

The software program created is capable of predicting the outcomes of animal assays, which eliminates the need to perform the actual test. In order to develop this program, the researchers gathered information from the US National Toxicology Program, PubChem and other public databases. Using this information, the researchers developed an algorithm that was 87 percent accurate in predicting the results of an animal test. Repeating animal tests is only effective 81 percent of the time, making the algorithm a more effective testing option.

During the course of their research, the scientists also discovered that animal testing involves a high level of redundancy. They discovered 69 chemicals in the database that had been tested more than 45 times each, in many cases by different companies. Two of these chemicals had been tested more than 90 times each.

Although the algorithm performed at least as well as the actual animal tests in the simulations conducted, this method still comes with limits. Specifically, the program has not been able to accurately predict a chemical’s propensity to cause cancer or other long-term effects.
The work on this program was partially funded by Underwriters Laboratories, a safety science company based out of Illinois. This company has already released the software they created to other companies that want to evaluate their chemicals before releasing them.

What It Means for Animal Testing

The United States and several other countries have established regulations that determine how companies must evaluate new chemicals that are intended to be used for consumer products, in the environment or for commercial purposes. Most of these regulations require companies to submit data on the safety of these chemicals before they can be sold or distributed. However, many of these countries are also working to limit the use of animals in the chemical testing process.

For example, in the United States, the National Toxicology Program, Environmental Protection Agency and National Institutes of Health initiated a program to develop better, more efficient non-animal toxicity tests in 2008. In 2016, the United States passed a law that requires federal agencies to make an effort to reduce and replace animal testing with alternatives. In the European Union, animal testing for cosmetic products has been banned since 2013.

The FDA is currently in the process of testing and evaluating this new software program. If the program proves successful in the long run, it will provide an inexpensive alternative to animal testing that could revolutionize testing processes all over the world. This program is unlikely to be the end of animal testing altogether, but it represents a step in the right direction.

Safety Methods for Eye and Skin Irritation Tests

The growing opposition to animal testing is driving research in in-vitro testing, especially for cosmetic and pharmaceutical products. The in vitro sector has recently experienced a number of technological advancements that have increased the usefulness and reduced the cost of these methods, while offering an alternative to animal testing. Some business sectors have completely replaced animal testing with in-vitro testing, particularly cosmetics intended for use in the European Union (EU). Other sectors use in-vitro testing to refine procedures, thus reducing the need for animal testing. These testing methods may generally be classified into eye and skin irritation tests.

Eye Irritation Tests

The Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS), Part 3.3, 2015 defines eye irritation as “the production of changes in the eye following the application of test substance to the anterior surface of the eye, which are fully reversible within 21 days of application.” It also defines serious eye damage, or eye corrosion, as “the production of tissue damage in the eye, or serious physical decay of vision, following application of a test substance to the anterior surface of the eye, which is not fully reversible within 21 days of application.”

Animal Testing

The Draize test was developed in 1944 and is still the standard testing method for eye irritation. Researchers instill the test material into one eye of albino rabbits, allowing the other eye to serve as a negative control. They then use a standardized scoring system to measure the effects of the material on various parts of the eye, including the conjunctiva, cornea and iris. Researchers score these effects after one hour, one day, two days and three days.

Non-Animal Testing

Much of the research on alternative approaches to animal testing for eye irritation in the United States is the result of collaboration between the following agencies:

•Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP)
•Institute for In Vitro Science (IIVS)
•Interagency Coordinating Committee on the Validation of Alternative Methods (ICCVAM)

These organizations generally recommend the use of in vitro methods such as the Bovine Cornea and Permeability (BCOP) assay, Cytosensor Microphysiometer assay, and EpiOcular assay. However, these organizations also add that additional invitro testing methods, such as InVitro International’s Ocular Irritection assay may be assessed on a case-by-case basis, depending on the supporting rationale for a departure from standardized methods of non-animal testing.

Skin Irritation Tests

GHS Rev. 3 defines skin irritation as “the production of reversible damage to the skin following the application of a test substance for up to 4 hours.” It also defines serious skin damage, or skin corrosion, as “the production of irreversible damage to the skin; namely, visible necrosis through the epidermis and into the dermis, following the application of a test substance for up to 4 hours.”

Animal Testing

The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) describes its method for skin toxicity testing in animals in OECD Test Guideline 404. Researchers apply the test material to six square centimeters of shaved skin of albino rabbits and cover it with gauze. They then remove the material after four hours and observe the effects at various intervals for up to two weeks.

Non-Animal Testing

A variety of in vitro methods for reproducing in vitro assessments are now available. For example reconstructed human epidermis (RHE) models, or 3D skin models, grow human cells on a membrane in a manner similar to growing human skin in a petri dish.
Commercially available non animal testing alternatives include the following:

•EST-1000 RHE
•SkinEthic RHE
•Vitrolife-Skin RHE
•EpiDerm Skin Irritation Test (SIT)
•EpiSkin SIT
•LabCyte EPI-MODEL
•InVitro International’s Dermal Irritection assay

For dermal toxicity (corrosion), InVitro Internationals Corrositex test is widely accepted around the world (US DOT, EPA, IATA, OECD, GHS, Transport Canada), as an invitro alternative to animal testing.

The Many Benefits of Using Alternatives to Animal Testing

Animal testing was the mainstay when it came to creating products that were safe for humans, primarily because there simply were no alternatives. Fortunately, researchers have developed many new non-animal tests that benefit both humans and animals.

About Alternatives to Animal Testing
Alternatives to animal testing are those methods that “replace, reduce or refine” the use of animals in research and testing. People sometimes refer to this as the “Three Rs” of testing. This concept of using non-animal tests is not new – William Russell and Rex Burch first described the approach in their 1959 book, The Principles of Humane Experimental Technique.

Specifically, these alternative test methods:

• Replace animals with computer or other non-animal systems, or replace a highly developed animal species with another less-developed one, such as replacing a mouse with a worm
• Reduce the number of animals used
• Refine techniques to decrease or eliminate pain or distress in animals or to improve the animal’s well-being

Benefits of Non-animal Testing

Animal-free testing may be more accurate
The results of animal testing may not always apply to human health. Research on mice, rats, guinea pigs, hamsters, and monkeys did not reveal a link between glass fibers and cancer, according to the New England Anti-Vivisection Society, so the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) labeled glass fibers as carcinogenic only after human studies established the link.

Non-animal testing may be more accurate than tests done on animals
Researchers discovered that one test using human skin cells grown in a lab (in vitro) was more accurate than traditional animal tests when it came to identifying chemicals that irritate the skin. In studies comparing the two testing approaches, the in vitro test correctly detected all of the chemical skin irritants while tests on rabbits failed 40 percent of the time.

Alternative testing saves the lives of animals
For example, the “Lethal Dose 50” (LD50) test is a testing approach in which animals ingest toxic substances until half of the animals in the study die, and the other half are killed later. Swedish researcher Dr. Bjӧrn Ekwall developed a replacement for LD50. This replacement test, which uses donated human tissues, saves animal lives. It is more also accurate – the test can measure toxicity accurately up to 85 percent of the time, compared with only 60 to 65 percent accuracy with LD50. Furthermore, the test can target effects on specific human organs and reveal certain features of toxicity, while animal testing cannot.

Alternative testing may be faster
Many alternative tests, such as those using synthetic skin rather than live animals, can provide information in as little as a few minutes to a few hours, compared with animal testing that often takes weeks or even months. Fast testing times means researchers can test five or six products with alternative testing in the time it takes to study a single product with animal testing.

Non-animal tests may be cost-effective
Faster testing times helps bring products to market quicker, so manufacturers can see a return on their investment sooner. Animal-free testing also reduces costs by reducing the need for animal purchasing, housing, feed and care.

Alternatives to animal testing are more environmentally friendly
This is especially true in toxicity testing, where researchers breed, test and then dispose of millions of test animals, which are classified as hazardous or pathogenic waste. Alternatives to animal testing are less harmful to the environment and they create less waste.
Alternatives save animals by creating other safe and effective approaches to testing, thereby reducing or eliminating the need to test products on animals. Using alternatives to animal testing does not put humans at risk, nor does it halt the progress of medicine. Instead, using these alternatives improves the quality of society as a whole.

States that Ban Animal Testing in the Skincare Industry

Over the past 20 years, animal rights activists have accelerated the steady drumbeat of non-animal testing into measurable gains in culture and legislation. Although federal action on the topic in the United States is relatively stagnant, many states are now looking to completely ban animal testing for cosmetics.

The New York Cruelty Free Cosmetics Act, introduced in 2016 and 2017, has inspired similar legislation in Hawaii. State senator Mike Gabbard (D-HI) introduced the Hawaii Cruelty Free Cosmetics Act in 2017 as well.

Recently, California has become the first state in the U.S. to ban animal-tested products, which is called the California Cruelty-Free Cosmetics Act. The California Cruelty-Free Cosmetics Act prohibits manufacturers to “import for profit, sell or offer for sale,” according to the Huffington Post. This law takes effect on Jan. 1, 2020. California’s main agenda is to step up on this issue and set aside profit biases.

Opponents to the federally based Humane Cosmetics Act continue to stall progress on it, despite support from hundreds of sponsors and cosmetics companies.

What are the next steps?

Many proponents of non-animal testing are taking their fight to the global stage. Under the banner of its “Forever Against Animal Testing” campaign, The Body Shop brought the largest-ever petition against cosmetic animal testing to the United Nations.

The document contains a record number of signatures – 8.3 million. Its goal is to create a framework that is global to ensure animal testing ends around the world. Statistics culled by the report state that 80% of countries do not ban animal testing.

The EU is putting pressure on the United States to consider a federal ban as well. However, Cosmetics Europe, the cosmetics industry official trade association in Europe, has fought against non-animal testing. Proponents point to Colombia pushing efforts to ban animal testing on a country-wide level – an effort that will likely end in an official ban in 2019 or 2020.

When could an animal testing law be passed? Is it likely?

There has been little progress federally to phase out the Humane Cosmetics Act, introduced in March of 2014 by Congressman Jim Moran (D-VA). After he retired, the mantle was taken up through a bipartisan effort led by Don Beyer (D-VA) and Martha McSally (R-AZ). However, the bill has yet to see a single hearing.

This could change with the more recent news that Unilever has announced support for the #BeCrueltyFree campaign. This campaign has a stated goal of completely stopping cosmetic testing on animals within the next five years around the world. As part of its support, Unilever is putting its considerable support behind the US Humane Cosmetics Act. The company is also working closely with the Humane Society to test for viable alternatives to traditional animal testing.

Individual states, however, seem to be moving with more expediency. As stated before, New York and Hawaii are the states closest to passing an actual law. Other states, including Arizona and Oregon, are having bills introduced.

Is there a viable alternative to animal testing?

In fact, support for non-animal testing has grown in the cosmetics industry in part because of the rise of viable alternatives. With special test kits and laboratory processes available for testing, the need for animals to test product is quantifiable diminishing.

The most effective alternatives are complying with government standards for consumer safety. More importantly, they are proving effective with a high correlation to the results received from animal and human testing.

What happens when emotion meets numbers?

As the cost of these new technologies continues to come down, proponents of animal testing will have a much less viable argument for continuing the practice. The emotion that activists have for animal rights will likely soon be joined by hard numbers detailing the cost savings of animal testing alternatives. Once this happens, politicians around the United States may have a tougher time holding back the legislation efforts that seem to be gaining momentum year after year.

The Most Effective Cost-Cutting Measure in Animal Testing Isn’t What You Think

Animal Testing as We Know It

Medical research relies heavily on animal testing to bring a medication to market. Before a drug can be approved for human use, it must go through the rigors of animal use to prove both its safety and efficacy. What’s more, many medications are administered in ways contrary to its intended use in order to develop safety warnings and side effect notices. While there are many instances where medical research simply cannot advance without the use of animal testing, others can enjoy the benefits of alternative testing methods and achieve the same goal.

Animal Testing Alternatives

Many replacement alternatives exist that have been endorsed by regulatory bodies as fully capable of replacing existing test methods. While the names and nuances vary, these methods fall into three distinct categories.

• Ex-vivo – Testing methods that use isolated animal organs and tissues
• Silico – Mathematical models and computer simulations that mimic human responses
• In Vitro – Primary cultures, 3-D cell cultures and cell lines that are used to predict a response.

Each of these alternative testing methods provide pharmaceutical researchers the ability to accurately predict human response using some or no animal tissues during testing. In terms of methodology, replacement alternatives offer researchers a chance to easily replicate results. Using tissues, cultures or computer simulations, you can easily and accurately predict how a tissue will react to a topical cream, cosmetic or chemical. These results can then be replicated over and over since the skin, chemical make up, hormone level, or blood count of the test subject never varies. Less variation leads to more accurate results and finer tuned product variation which, in turn can lead to greater safety and efficacy in the long run.

Financial Reward

There are two major financial rewards for using animal testing alternatives.

First, market share is often given to the first medication to safely make it to market for a particularly popular condition. The race to create a safe, effective drug is real, even while most medications take upwards of 10 years to go from initial concept to FDA approval. If a medication can be safely and accurately tested without having to wait weeks or months to observe short- and long-term effects, the length of the testing process is drastically reduced.

Second, animal testing alternatives are less expensive to employ in the long run. Factoring in the speed at which a product can be tested and the accuracy of the results, using primary cultures in particular offers a less expensive alternative to animal testing. The ability to bring testing in house saves in outsourcing costs while the ability for testing to work in tandem with development to produce a more effective product increases productivity across the board.

Curious how invitro testing can help you cut costs? Let one of our specialists show you how InVitro International’s irritation and skin toxicity products can save you time and money, virtually replacing animal testing for topical medications.

No Time to Lose: How Animal Testing Alternatives Save Time

One of the biggest challenges cosmetic, pharmaceutical, or chemical manufacturers face is the time it takes to go from formulation of a product to the marketplace. Your lipstick, cleaning product or topical ointment may be poised to revolutionize its respective industry, but getting that product to market before your competitors will often determine its market share. You don’t want to rush a product to market without determining its safety. Not only is this practice unethical, having to recall a product due to safety problems is damaging to your brand. So, how do you take a product from development to market quickly and safely?

What We Do Now

In order to see how to save time on the journey from concept to market, it is important to look at the current process. For the sake of illustration, let’s look at the current process a cosmetic goes through to get from an idea to a product on the shelf.

A chemist at Company A figures out that hyaluronic acid, a compound already found naturally in the skin, can potentially be applied topically as an anti-aging moisturizer. Once that concept is accepted as a potential product, formulation begins with what Company A currently knows to be safe and effective. They may take an existing moisturizer and begin adding hyaluronic acid to it in a variety of concentrations, all the while looking for the fine line where the maximum amount of compound can be applied for maximum results without irritating the skin. This often involves several iterations of the product being tested on several animal subjects, each time waiting for and recording results. Once the product is determined safe, packaging and marketing can move forward as it is introduced to the market.

The Bottleneck

The biggest bottleneck to the current process is not the generation of ideas or the compounding process, but the testing process that determines whether a product is safe. Testing a variety of concentrations and then waiting for immediate reactions and long-term effects can take months for a product that is regulated by the FDA but does not necessarily require FDA approval. That same process can often last for years for pharmaceuticals that must go through more rigorous federal approval processes, even if they only come into casual contact with the skin.

Animal Testing Alternatives

Fortunately, there are alternatives to animal testing that can determine the safety of a product in a fraction of the time. Rather than waiting for a possible short- and long-term reaction in the eyes or on the skin of an animal, in vitro test methods can use macromolecular changes to predict whether a chemical, mixture or product will be irritating to the eyes or skin. Where traditional testing methods take weeks of observation before reformulation can begin, these alternative testing methods can offer quantitative results in as little as one day. Most notably, animal testing alternatives are highly reproducible. As a result, formulations and their irritancy can be compared side by side without regard for variations that are always present in multiple animal test subjects.

Eliminating the animal testing logjam from new product development and replacing it with data-rich, reproducible results ready for FDA examination can change the way we do business. Necessary and revolutionary medications can reach the consumer faster than the typical 10 years it takes to go from idea to FDA approval. Cosmetics that improve the quality of life of the user can be applied to faces across the country in weeks, rather than the months or years it typically takes. Chemicals that are necessary parts of the human experience can be deemed safe for use in a fraction of the time. Let us show you how InVitro’s Irritection Assay System can offer you a competitive advantage you cannot pass up.

The Growing In Vitro Toxicology Testing Market: What Does This Mean for Animal Safety?

By the year 2022, the in vitro toxicology testing market is predicted to be worth approximately $8.74 billion. This represents a CAGR of 6.6%, starting from an industry that was worth $6.34 billion in 2017.

In vitro toxicology testing is experiencing this accelerated growth in part because of rising opposition to animal testing. In previous business generations, animal testing was considered the most cost-effective way to test for toxins in beauty products and other types of products. Today, this is not the case.

New technologies for in vitro toxicology testing have created a quantifiable justification to move away from animal testing. This coincides with activist victories in major markets, including legislation banning animal testing in the European Union and the United States. Furthermore, new methods of testing are considered to be more accurate in detecting toxins as well.

Leading the Way: The US National Academy of Sciences

The US National Academy of Sciences (NAS) in 2007 published research pointing to a new type of toxicology testing. This new version, founded on an in vitro methodology, took advantage of new biotechnology, systems biology, computational toxicology, toxicogenomics and epigenetics. These advancements made it possible to determine the toxicity of certain substances using a single cell instead of an entire animal.

NAS put forth a more scientific view of cellular structure and networking. It found that cell networks were made up of complex interactions between molecules, genes and proteins. Knowledge of these systems opened up a way to map out what came to be known as “adverse outcome pathways.”

AOPs

The adverse outcome pathway, or AOP, allowed scientists to identify how a chemical will affect a biological target by sampling cells from that target. The results from such a sample are so accurate that the map can even extend to a population, far beyond the effect to a single animal. This finding more than anything the NAS put forth enabled testing to move from in vivo testing to in vitro testing. With this, the notion of animal testing as superior officially became obsolete.

Animal Testing No Longer Cost Effective

A report published in 2018 by the New England Anti Vivisection Society (NEAVS) and the White Coat Waste Project found that the National Toxicology Program (NTP) had used more than $186 million of taxpayer money in animal testing. This included tests on more than 115,000 animals.

The NTP currently uses over 100 different tests on animals. Alongside those tests are only seven that do not include animals, although the NTP has actually approved more than 70 of those tests. The report also found that the NTP does not have a great deal of accountability or transparency when it comes to its stated goal of replacing animal tests with in vitro technologies and other forward thinking methodologies.

Because the NTP is a subsidiary of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), it receives cover from the FDA and the CDC, the report found. This means that even though nonanimal testing has been found to be more effective and cost-efficient, the concept may die hard in deep state centers of government. Allocations from the CDC, the FDA and NIEHS funded the NTP with $131 million in 2016.

What Does This All Mean?

The growing private in vitro market does not necessarily protect animals from being unfairly marked for testing. Long-standing government programs that must go through bureaucracy and restructure employment for entire departments will not be easily changed. It is up to activists and legislators alike to come up with ways not only to make nonanimal testing more cost-effective, but also more acceptable to government. Change becomes especially difficult at points because the NTP audits its own processes as “very efficient.”

Invitro International provides viable solutions to animal testing that are also cost efficient for companies. For more information, visit the website or call the toll free number at 800-246-8487.

Ocular Testing with the Ocular Irritection® Assay System

The Invitro Irritection® Assay System measures a person’s eye sensitivity and irritation to chemicals or substances they may have been exposed to. Unlike most other types of testing, this system is in vitro, meaning it is done without animal testing. The results of this standardized test can be set up as a yes/no or pass/fail objective or as a quantitative measure. It works by using changes of relevant macromolecules to predict the ocular irritancy.
The test is made up of two components: “a membrane disc that permits controlled delivery of the test material to a reagent solution and a proprietary reagent solution that is composed of proteins, glycoproteins, lipids and low molecular weight components that self-associate to form a complex macromolecular matrix”. The controlled mixing of these two components during the test incubation period promotes “protein denaturation and disaggregation of the macromolecular matrix”, something that can be measured and quantified.

Benefits of using the Invitro Irritection® Assay System

1. The Invitro Irritection® Assay System provides a good, safe alternative to animal tests for ocular irritancy.
2. This system costs less than in vivo testing.
3. Results from the Irritection® system can be obtained in as little as one day. This compares to an average of seven days for in vivotesting.
4. Irritection® assays are quantitative and highly reproducible, making it easy to compare like samples.
5. Our Irritection® assays support a socially-conscious, no animal testing platform, one that you can use in your patient, laboratory or company marketing.
6. The Irritection® Assay System is a GHS (Global Harmonized System) accepted method of testing for ocular irritancy, approved by agencies such as OSHA and the UN Economic Commission.
7. Our Irritection® test kits are easy to use and can be shipped to countries all over the globe.

About Invitro International

Invitro International, founded in 1985, is a pioneer in the development and application of non-animal testing alternatives for irritation and skin toxicity testing. Based in Placentia, California, our company is customer and technology-driven, and develops and markets in vitro assay kits and systems to detect, rank, and predict the potential level of irritancy, toxicity or corrosivity of substances to human eye and/or skin tissue.

Other Invitro International products include Corrositex, an in vitro test that measures the corrosivity of chemicals and other substances. The company also provides customized lab services for scientists and researchers in a number of diverse industries. Both the Irritection® System and Corrositex were in development for 25 years before becoming commercially available, so you can be assured that adequate safety and effectiveness testing has been done on both products.
Invitro International wants to help your organization help people responsibly. To learn more about the Ocular Irritection® Assay System and how it can benefit your practice, clinic or lab, visit invitrointl.com or contact us at 800-246-8487.