Washington, D.C. — Today the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released five new policies and guidance documents to advance its "Strategic Direction for New Pesticide Testing and Assessment Approaches" and the PETA International Science Consortium, Ltd, and the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine are pleased to see that these should result in a reduction in the number of animals killed in pesticide toxicity tests. Scientists from both organizations had encouraged EPA to issue this guidance to support the goal of moving towards a more integrated approach to toxicity testing and reducing animal use in pesticide testing. The guidance includes documents for staff and registrants to determine how to use a weight-of-evidence approach to avoid animal tests in general, and for specific endpoints such as immunotoxicity, neurotoxicity, and repeat-dose dermal and inhalation studies. The Agency also formalized a previous pilot program and policy that accepts a nonanimal approach for assessing the eye irritation potential of antimicrobial cleaning products, and guidance for incorporating genetic toxicity endpoints into repeat-dose toxicity studies.
Because testing requirements for each pesticide active ingredient consume more than 10,000 animals, including dogs, and the EPA's new regulations for testing anti-microbial products vastly increase the numbers of animals who will be killed to test anti-microbial pesticides, we encourage registrants to follow these recommendations as fully as possible to reduce the death toll for animals.
Please contact Tasgola Bruner at TasgolaB@peta.org for links to the below guidance documents:
Guiding Principles for Data Requirements
Part 158 Toxicology Data Requirements: Guidance for Neurotoxicity Battery, Subchronic Inhalation, Subchronic Dermal and Immunotoxicity Studies
Guidance for Selecting, Identifying and Evaluating Open Literature Studies
Combining Genotoxicity Testing with Standard Repeated Dose Toxicology Testing
Use of an Alternate Testing Framework for Classification of Eye Irritation Potential of EPA Pesticide Products