News from IMIM and CEXS-UPF
An international consortium of 39 partner organisations will be funded by the European Commission throughout the Horizon 2020 programme to work on the integration of new concepts for regulatory chemical safety assessment. These new concepts involve cutting-edge human-relevant in vitro non-animal methods and in silico computational technologies to translate molecular mechanistic understanding of toxicity into safety testing strategies. The ultimate goal is to deliver reliable, animal-free hazard and risk assessment of chemicals.
Coordinated by Bob van de Water, Professor of Toxicology at Leiden University (The Netherlands), EU-ToxRisk intends to become the European flagship for animal-free chemical safety assessment. The project will integrate advancements in cell biology, omics technologies, systems biology and computational modelling to define the complex chains of events that link chemical exposure to toxic outcome.
The Research Programme of Biomedical Informatics, (GRIB, UPF-IMIM) will have a major role in this project bringing its expertise in Bioinformatics and Chemoinformatics. In particular, members of GRIB will be responsible of compiling and making available to the rest of the consortium the enabling computational technologies that will play a central role in the project. These include read-across and quantitative structure-activity methods, in silico pharmacokinetics, platforms for the analysis of omics information, and statistical methods for data analysis and visualization.
This contributions will be aligned to the role that GRIB is playing in IMI projects focused on the safety assessment of drugs: the eTOX project focused on the in silico prediction of in vivo toxicity, and the iPiE one aiming to assess the ecotoxicological risks of pharmaceuticals.