A European Centre for Ecotoxicology and Toxicology (Ecetoc) taskforce has released guidance for assessing whether or not a substance "possesses endocrine disrupting properties".
The guidance is made up of seven steps for identifying endocrine disrupting properties (ECETOC 7SI-ED) and is an expansion of an outline of draft guidance for setting hazard-based criteria for identifying endocrine disruptors. ECHA and the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) developed the guidance with support from the European Commission's Joint Research Centre (JRC).
The seven steps of the guidance are:
- gathering relevant data relating to adverse effects and endocrine modes of action;
- evaluating data quality;
- evaluating evidence for adverse effects;
- evaluating evidence for endocrine activity;
- integrating the evidence and evaluating biological plausibility that adverse effect and endocrine activity are linked by specific endocrine mode of action;
- identifying uncertainties; and
- concluding on endocrine disrupting properties
According to Ecetoc, "the most appropriate sequence of steps should be determined on a case-by-case basis, requiring 'expert judgement'".
A public consultation on the draft guidance is scheduled for the summer of 2017.