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Press Releases

Obsolete toxicology and human health in peril

 

Date

Mon 12 Feb 2007

 

Summary

After the adoption of the REACH regulations, Antidote Europe reminds Mr. Barroso that he has not answered the 140 associations from 12 countries, representing more than 1,200,000 European citizens, who ask that chemical substances responsible for cancer and other serious diseases be tested with truly scientific methods.

Antidote Europe challenges the European Commission on the subject of the tests required in the framework of REACH. Drawn up with the aim of safeguarding human life and the environment, the REACH Regulation was adopted last December. However, rather than making use of modern methods to reveal the toxicity of chemical substances, tests will continue to be conducted, as in the Middle Ages, on animals and to give results that are as uncertain as tossing a coin… unless such results are aimed at showing the harmlessness of substances that are nevertheless dangerous!

Antidote Europe has just written to the European Commission, whose directives determine the methods by which chemical substances are to be tested, reminding it of the existence of scientific methods such as toxicogenomics. This method has already been in use in the United States for some years. More recently, the Joint Research Centre, under the aegis of the European Commission, set up a toxicogenomics department. Since toxicogenomics gives results that are valid for humans, is more rapid and costs less than the tests currently required, why is its use being delayed? Why does the European Commission continue to insist on tests on animals, although these were called “simply bad science” by a member of its own scientific staff?

Belgium will perhaps set a good example. On 29th November last, the Social Affairs Committee of the Belgian Senate passed a motion for a resolution aimed at the creation of a centre for toxicogenomics. Were such a centre to be set up, it would take only two years to test the 100,000 chemical substances potentially present in our environment.

Below is the text of the letter sent by Antidote Europe to Mr. José Manuel Barroso on 8th February last.

 

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