Monday, November 8, 2010

ECHA Makes Available QSAR Toolbox 2.0 to Facilitate Chemical Assessments

ECHA and OECD are making available an assessment software that they call "The Toolbox."  It is intended to that the toolbox "tools" will be used by "governments, chemical industry and other stakeholders in filling gaps in (eco)toxicity data needed for assessing the hazards of chemicals."  The Toolbox incorporates information and tools from various sources into a logical workflow, including a crucial element -  grouping chemicals into chemical categories.

The fundamental features of the Toolbox are:
  1. Identification of relevant structural characteristics and potential mechanism or mode of action of a target chemical.
  2. Identification of other chemicals that have the same structural characteristics and/or mechanism or mode of action.
  3. Use of existing experimental data to fill the data gap(s).
According to OECD, "the goal of Phase 2 development is to ensure that the category approach to filling data gaps works uniformly for all discrete organic chemicals and for all regulatory endpoints."  It is a two year work plan which began in the 4th Quarter of 2008.  "The work plan has five thematic areas namely Information Technology, Chassis Development and Additional Functionalities, Database Compilation, (Q)SAR Library and Expert System Compilation, and Training. The implementation of the features is divided between two versions."

This Version 2.0 was released in October 2010 and Version 3.0 is planned for release in October 2012.

More information and a place to download the toolbox can be found here.

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