G. Frank Gerberick

Over the past 20 years or more, investigators have been developing non-animal test methods for use in assessing the skin sensitisation potential of chemicals. In parallel with this effort, the key biological events of skin sensitisation have been well-characterised in an Adverse Outcome Pathway (AOP) proposed by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). The key molecular initiating event of this AOP is haptenation or covalent modification of epidermal proteins. In this review, the strengths and limitations of the Direct Peptide Reactivity Assay (DPRA) are described, and the more recently developed Peroxidase Peptide Reactivity Assay (PPRA). The DPRA has been formally validated and incorporated into an OECD Test Guideline (TG442C). The DPRA shows promise for assisting in hazard identification as well as for assessing skin sensitisation potency when used in an integrated testing strategy.
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