News - The Nano - gut

The Nano - gut

The Scotsman. 4 June 2010.
Scientists find alternative to animal testing.

A GROUP of leading international scientists are developing a "test-tube gut and liver" as an easier, more convenient and ethically sound alternative to animal testing.

The project, called InLiveTox, will be discussed at a major international nanotoxicology conference at Edinburgh Napier University this week named Nanotoxicology 2010.

The three-year £2 million project brings together leaders in nanotoxicology from around the world, including Edinburgh Napier, to develop a way of testing the toxicity of tiny ingested particles that doesn't rely on animals. Instead the "test-tube gut and liver" will emulate the response of cells and tissues.

Dr Gary Hutchison, acting director of Edinburgh Napier's Centre for Nano Safety, said: "Given the widespread use of nanomaterials in a variety of everyday products, it is essential for us to fully understand them and their potential impacts.

"We are working with other European specialists on the InLiveTox project to develop a viable, effective alternative to using animals in such testing. A recent change in European chemical safety legislation means that there is a requirement for information on the toxicity of all materials used in significant quantities by 2018. That means there is pressure to thoroughly investigate how substances affect humans in the long term."

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