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National Toxicology Program

National Toxicology Program

UPDATE NewsletterUPDATE NewsletterMarch 2017

NTP Interagency Center for the Evaluation of Alternative Toxicological Methods

By Catherine Sprankle

New agency joins ICCVAM

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has joined the Interagency Coordinating Committee on the Validation of Alternative Methods (ICCVAM). NIST participation will provide ICCVAM with interest and experience in the study of process controls, measurement artifacts, and interlaboratory testing.

ICCVAM, which is supported by NICEATM, was established to facilitate and promote development and regulatory acceptance of new toxicological tests with the potential to replace, reduce, or refine animal use. The expertise within NIST will benefit ICCVAM, especially in the development of validation studies to assess the appropriateness of new test methods for specific purposes. In particular, NIST has experience with cell-based and small model organism assays, which are becoming increasingly important as alternatives for traditional animal tests. NIST also brings to ICCVAM additional expertise in experimental design and statistical analysis.

This event represents the first time ICCVAM has expanded its membership to include a new member agency since its inception in 2000. NIST, which is part of the U.S. Department of Commerce, has been interacting with ICCVAM since 2015. The agency submitted an official request to join ICCVAM in January 2017, which was approved in February 2017 by NIEHS Director Linda Birnbaum.

NICEATM and ICCVAM activities at the Society of Toxicology meeting

A new page on the NTP website ( summarizes NICEATM and ICCVAM activities at the upcoming meeting of the Society of Toxicology.

NICEATM and ICCVAM will be participating in two exhibitor-hosted sessions.

  • “Developing an Implementation Strategy for Toxicity Testing in the 21st Century” will be Monday, March 13, at 12 noon in CC Room 340. This session will present a plan and seek stakeholder input on development of a U.S. roadmap to new approaches for toxicity testing.
  • “ICCVAM Tools for Validation and Regulatory Application of Alternative Methods” will be Wednesday, March 15, at 1:30 in CC Room 337. Representatives from NICEATM, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and the National Library of Medicine will present an overview of online resources that support development and use of alternative methods.

In other Society of Toxicology activities, ICCVAM representatives will serve as co-chairs for five platform sessions, NICEATM scientists are co-authors on 10 poster or platform presentations, and ICCVAM members are co-authors on 18 presentations.

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The Update Newsletter is produced by NTP Office of Liaison, Policy, and Review. The text is not copyrighted and can be reprinted without permission. If you use parts of the Update Newsletter in your publication, we ask that you provide us with a copy for our records. We welcome your comments and suggestions.

Director of Office of Liaison, Policy, and Review and Editor-in-Chief: Mary Wolfe | Managing Editor: Anna Lee Mosley