There is insufficient data to validate the EpiOcular, Cytosensor Microphysiometer and bovine corneal opacity and permeability assays for gauging the eye irritation potential of antimicrobial cleaning products without animal involvement, concludes a scientific peer review panel convened by ICCVAM at its May 19-21 meeting in Bethesda, Md. Panel recommends further studies to characterize the three in vitro methods, invites stakeholders to submit validation and testing data to NICEATM. Panel additionally greenlights bovine corneal opacity and permeability assay and Cytosensor Microphysiometer test as screening methods to identify some products that would not require hazard labeling for eye irritation. Experts recommend using topical anesthetics and systemic analgesics prior to any in vivo ocular irritancy testing to minimize discomfort for the animal. Scientists from U.S., Japan, Canada, the Netherlands, Belgium and Spain participated in the review, in keeping with recently signed memorandum of cooperation promising greater international harmonization (1"The Rose Sheet" May 4, 2009, p. 6). Full report will be made available on the NICEATM/ICCVAM Web site later this year, and a summary of the panel's conclusions will be presented at the Scientific Advisory Committee on Alternative Toxicological Methods' public meeting June 25-29
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