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International Committee Reveals New Approach to Risk Assessment

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SOURCE Health and Environmental Sciences Institute

WASHINGTON, Sept. 4, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- The Health and Environmental Sciences Institute (HESI) announced today that the first three manuscripts from its Risk Assessment in the 21st Century (RISK21) Project have been published and are available for download online. These papers explain a science-based, transparent, and highly visual approach for performing accurate risk assessments in the 21st Century.

ILSI Health and Environmental Sciences Institute

RISK21 – a multi-sector program comprised of more than 120 participants from 12 countries, 15 government institutions, 20 universities, and two non-government organizations-was developed in 2010, in response to calls from the U.S. National Academy of Sciences (NAS), Canadian Academies, and the European Union, among others, to implement fundamental changes to the current unsustainable and inefficient risk assessment methodologies. These three papers are the first of several publications coming from the four-year effort. 

The first two papers (A 21st century roadmap for human health risk assessment and
Risk assessment in the 21st century: Roadmap and matrix), describe the principles of the new approach and provide a technical guide for utilizing the RISK21 "roadmap," including a matrix tool that provides a visual representation of estimated risk

The third paper (The use of mode of action information in risk assessment: Quantitative key events/dose-response framework for modeling the dose-response for key events) provides a framework to guide the quantitative evaluation of key events associated with a chemical's mode of action, including both exposure and toxicity.  Examples are used to illustrate the utility of this framework.

"RISK21 requires that the risk issue in question is clearly described and calls for earlier integration of exposure data," said Prof. Alan Boobis, professor of biochemical pharmacology at Imperial College London and co-chair of the RISK21 Committee. "This tiered process ensures optimization of resources, while providing sufficient information for decision-making."

"RISK21 appears very simple, but it represents a major step forward by providing the ability to combine complex data obtained through both traditional and emerging methods and display it in a way that is highly visual and informative," said Prof. Boobis. "These first three papers are the products of a number of talented scientists from both public and the private sectors. Our hope is that risk assessors around the world embrace and adopt this process."

All three papers are available for download here.

About HESI

HESI was established in 1989 as a global branch of the International Life Sciences Institute (ILSI) to provide an international forum dedicated to advancing the understanding of scientific issues related to human health, toxicology, risk assessment, and the environment. HESI brings together a global network of scientists from academia, government, industry, research institutes and NGOs to address scientific questions that have the potential to be resolved through creative application of intellectual and financial resources.

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