Abstract

The ecotoxicity testing of chemicals for prospective environmental safety assessment is an area in which a high number of vertebrates are used across a variety of industry sectors. Refining, reducing, and replacing the use of animals such as fish, birds, and amphibians for this purpose addresses the ethical concerns and the increasing legislative requirements to consider alternative test methods. Members of the UK-based National Centre for the Replacement, Refinement and Reduction of Animals in Research (NC3Rs) Ecotoxicology Working Group, consisting of representatives from academia, government organizations, and industry, have worked together over the past 6 y to provide evidence bases to support and advance the application of the 3Rs in regulatory ecotoxicity testing. The group recently held a workshop to identify the areas of testing, demands, and drivers that will have an impact on the future of animal use in regulatory ecotoxicology. As a result of these discussions, we have developed a pragmatic approach to prioritize and realistically address key opportunity areas, to enable progress toward the vision of a reduced reliance on the use of animals in this area of testing. This paper summarizes the findings of this exercise and proposes a pragmatic strategy toward our key long-term goals-the incorporation of reliable alternatives to whole-organism testing into regulations and guidance, and a culture shift toward reduced reliance on vertebrate toxicity testing in routine environmental safety assessment. Integr Environ Assess Manag 2016;12:417-421. © 2015 SETAC.

DOI

10.1002/ieam.1703

Publication Date

2016-07-01

Publication Title

Integrated Environmental Assessment and Management

Volume

12

Issue

3

First Page

417

Last Page

421

ISSN

1551-3777

Organisational Unit

School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences

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