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Computational Toxicology Research Program

2007 International Science Forum on Computational Toxicology

Note: EPA no longer updates this information, but it may be useful as a reference or resource.

May 21–23, 2007
U.S. EPA Main Facility
Research Triangle Park, NC

The International Science Forum on Computational Toxicology was held at the U.S. EPA's Main Campus in Research Triangle Park, NC, on May 21–23, 2007.

Designed for public, private sector and academic researchers active in the field as well as risk assessors and risk managers, the Forum highlighted progress in the use of modern molecular, biological and chemical based tools on the assessment of exposure, hazard and risk of environmental chemicals. Approximately 50 invited speakers from around the world presented the latest advances in computational toxicology.

A State of the Science Mini Review

Advances in computer sciences and hardware combined with equally significant developments in molecular biology and chemistry are providing toxicology with a powerful new tool box. This tool box of computational models promises to increase the efficiency and the effectiveness by which the hazards and risks of environmental chemicals are determined. Computational toxicology focuses on applying these tools across many scales, including vastly increasing the numbers of chemicals and the types of biological interactions that can be evaluated. In addition, knowledge of toxicity pathways gathered within the tool box will be directly applicable to the study of the biological responses across a range of dose levels, including those more likely to be representative of exposures to the human population. Progress in this field will facilitate the transformative shift called for in the recent report on toxicology in the 21st century by the National Research Council. This review surveys the state of the art in many areas of computational toxicology and points to several hurdles that will be important to overcome as the field moves forward. Proof-of-concept studies need to clearly demonstrate the additional predictive power gained from these tools. More researchers need to become comfortable working with both the data generating tools and the computational modeling capabilities, and regulatory authorities must show a willingness to the embrace new approaches as they gain scientific acceptance. The next few years should witness the early fruits of these efforts, but as the National Research Council indicates, the paradigm shift will take a long term investment and commitment to reach full potential.

Robert J Kavlock, Gerald Ankley, Jerry Blancato, Michael Breen, Rory Conolly, David Dix, Keith Houck, Elaine Hubal, Richard Judson, James Rabinowitz, Ann Richard, R. Woodrow Setzer, Imran Shah, Daniel Villeneuve, and Eric Weber
Computational Toxicology – A State of the Science Mini Review
ToxSci Advance Access published on December 7, 2007.
Abstract | Accepted Manuscript Exit EPA Disclaimer

The International Science Forum on Computational Toxicology was sponsored and coordinated by the National Center of Computational Toxicology within EPA's Office of Research and Development. This year's Forum differed in size and scope from past Forums, but presented new opportunities to highlight computational toxicology research. The more focused, smaller meeting centered exclusively on computational tools and research being developed to better inform the science of toxicology. In 2008, it is anticipated that the Science Forum will return to the broader format with multiple partners.

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