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Volume 12, Issue 2     

British American Tobacco Joins our Science Advisory Panel

British American TobaccoIIVS is pleased to welcome Dr. Marianna Gaca of British American Tobacco's (BAT) Group Research & Development Center to its Science Advisory Panel. BAT's research and development activities are principally focused on better understanding the harm caused by tobacco use and working to develop potentially less harmful products. Part of BAT's current research program is focused on developing in vitro models relevant to a number of tobacco related diseases and disease processes. BAT hopes that these models will enable them to understand further the biological effects of tobacco smoke and provide a tool for the assessment of prototype products  To learn more about BAT's research and development activities, please visit  

Assay Validation: Preparing for Success   


"Has this method been validated?"  "Can you help validate our test?"


At IIVS, we are often asked these and similar questions for a variety of reasons. Sometimes clients would like to know whether a certain in vitro protocol has been validated (is it reproducible and reliable) and will it meet their testing goals. Sometimes they inquire if it is validated for regulatory use. Other times they would like assistance in validating a protocol to screen their unique product candidates. We are also frequently called upon by industry consortia and methods developers to participate in or lead the formal multi-laboratory validation of methods for potential regulatory safety testing.


What is assay validation, and what are the goals of a validation?


Validation is a planned, detailed, fully documented process for the experimental and statistical evaluation of a proposed method including the associated prediction model within the constraints of its intended purpose. Simply put: Does the method do what it is intended to do?  

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IIVS Training:

Safety Research Institute for Chemical Compounds
Hokkaido, Japan 



  The SRICC lab team trains on
the   Bovine Corneal Opacity and Permeability (BCOP) assay.

In February, IIVS was invited by the Japanese Center on the Validation of Alternative Methods (JaCVAM) to the Safety Research Institute for Chemical Compounds Co., Ltd (SRICC) in Hokkaido, Japan to provide training on the Bovine Corneal Opacity and Permeability (BCOP) assay. SRICC is a contract research laboratory that was established in 1970. They provide toxicology testing services for various industries such as pharmaceutical, agricultural, and chemical manufacturers.  


The training was conducted over 4 days, and provided several staff members with the opportunity to perform the assay under the supervision of IIVS staff. The training focused on perfecting the technical details of the assay to provide their technicians with the experience to handle some of the unique challenges that can be encountered when working with the assay system. A lecture on histology was also provided by Hans Raabe, which demonstrated representative artifacts that may be observed in the analysis of bovine corneas.  


At the end of the training, SRICC's lab team demonstrated their proficiency in the assay to members of JACVAM. SRICC aims to continue to gain experience with the assay and begin using it for commercial services in the near future. With the training received from IIVS, SRICC will be the first organization in Japan to offer BCOP for commercial testing services.  

Participants in the IIVS training session at Japan's SRICC laboratory. 



Hans Raabe, Vice President, Director Laboratory Services of IIVS has been selected as Vice President-elect to the Society of Toxicology's In Vitro and Alternative Methods (IVAM) Specialty Section. The IVAM Specialty Section was founded in 1994 and consists of members who have expertise or interest in the application of in vitro techniques to problems of cellular toxicity, with a special emphasis on product safety evaluation. IVAM holds regular meetings at the annual SOT meeting and sponsors continuing education courses as well as three student awards for posters on subjects related to in vitro toxicology.  


Erin Hill, Vice President, Director Program Development, has been elected to the board of the In Vitro Testing Industrial Platform (IVTIP). Member companies utilize IVTIP as a forum to further their interest in the use of in vitro methods for regulatory and safety testing and to network with experts in the field during two annual meetings.  As a board member Erin will be involved in designing IVTIP programs and representing the organization at various conferences. For more information on the platform or to become a member, please visit  


Brian Jones, Director Education and Outreach Programs has been awarded a professorship in the School of Science at Beijing Technology and Business University (BTBU). BTBU, awarded the rank of Excellence by the Ministry of Education, is a key state-run university in China with comprehensive disciplines covering Arts, Sciences, Engineering, Law and more. The School of Science currently has more than 300 undergraduates, 60 post graduates and 78 faculty members with 14 professors. Brian's responsibilities will be to provide a fall lecture series on skin biology, safety and efficacy testing of cosmetic products and ingredients, with a focus on non-animal methods, and as a graduate student advisor.  For more information on BTBU please click here.   


Save the Date for the Next IIVS Webinar:


Revising Skin Irritation Testing Strategies: Applying Non-Animal Test Methods

July 19th, 10 am EDT 


Join Hans Raabe of IIVS to discuss the integration of non-animal test methods into your strategy for determining the dermal irritation potential of test materials. The skin irritation test (SIT) for R38 prediction (OECD TG 439), skin corrosivity assay (OECD TG 431), and a time-to-toxicity approach will be discussed. Both regulatory and non-regulatory uses of these methods will be highlighted along with basic protocol outlines and strategies to use non-animal test methods for labeling purposes. Click on the image to the right to register.   

News & Upcoming Events

15th International Workshop on Quantitative Structure-Activity Relationships (QSAR2012) in Environmental and Health Sciences 

June 18 - 22, 2012, Tallinn, Estonia 

This workshop brings together experimentalists and modelers from industry, academia, and regulatory agencies. It is a place to share information and viewpoints on emerging research results and tools relating to SARs, QSAR-s/QSPR-s. To register please visit the workshop website.     


14th Annual Congress of European Society for Alternatives to Animal Testing (EUSAAT)

September 5 - 8, 2012, Linz, Austria

Deadlines for the submission: Lectures - May 31, Posters - June 15 

For program details please visit the conference website.

American Society for Cellular and Computational Toxicology (ASCCT)
September 21, 2012, NIH Campus, Bethesda, MD
Please see more information on right panel or visit

European Society for Toxicology In Vitro International Conference    

October 16 - 19, 2012, Lisbon, Portugal      

ESTIV 2012 will cover a broad range of topics addressing systemic toxicity, local toxicity, developmental toxicity with emphasis on physiologically relevant markers, marker profiles, molecular mechanisms and pathways.  Abstract Submission date extended to June 15, 2012.
For more information please visit
COLAMA 2012: 1st Latin American Congress Of Alternative Methods for Use Of Animals In Education, Research and Industry
November 25 - 29, 2012, Niteroi (RJ), Brazil
Styled after the World Congress on Alternatives, this event aims to provide a forum for groups of Latin American countries interested in alternative methods as well as interaction with an international audience. Themes will cover ethics, teaching methods, refinement and applications in industry. Exhibit and sponsorship opportunities are also available. Please visit the congress website for more information.


Special Pricing for Skin Irritation Testing


IIVS is happy to partner with MatTek to provide special discounted pricing for select OECD approved testing methods:
 Skin Irritation Test
(OECD TG 439) 
Skin Corrosion Test
(OECD TG 431)


Would you like to learn more about IIVS' technical capabilities or training opportunities? Send us an email or visit our web-site at

 (301) 947-6523 
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World Congress Logo

Proceedings of the Eighth World Congress on Alternatives and Animal Use in the Life Sciences  

Now Available 


The Proceedings, including 82 manuscripts and session summaries have  been published and can be accessed on the ALTEX website 


The 9th World Congress  

will convene in Prague, Czech Republic,

24-28 August, 2014  


Chinese Flag

China SFDA proposes first in vitro method for the testing of cosmetics 



The China State Food and Drug Administration has issued a draft proposal for an alternative method to animal experiments when testing cosmetic ingredients for acute phototoxic effects on the skin.  

Read more     

ECVAM logo
Now available:
the ECVAM Search Guide on Alternatives to Animal Testing

   The guide has been developed for novice database users to find relevant, high quality information on alternatives to animal testing.  


To read more about the guide please visit the ECVAM website or visit a recent posting on AltTox.


The Guide can be downloaded for free at  

EU Book Shop  


ASCCT Banner

American Society for Cellular and

Computational Toxicology



 First Annual Meeting Save The Date!   


September 21, 2012

Lister Hill Auditorium

NIH Campus

Bethesda, MD


Plenary lecture by:


Dr. Melvin AndersenAssociate Director of The Institute for Chemical Safety Sciences, The Hamner Institute and ASCCT Board Member   



Now Accepting Abstracts 


Abstracts are now being accepted for poster presentations. For directions on how to submit an abstract, please visit the ASCCT website.  A select number of abstracts will be chosen for oral  



Next Member Webinar:

June 21, 2012

2 pm EDT


Dr. Nicole Kleinstreuer, Postdoctoral Fellow at EPA's National Center for Computational Toxicology, will present her work on the Virtual Embryo Project 





For more information on both Events please visit