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Toolbox for testing chemical cocktails under development

Thursday 02 Jul 15

Contact

Bodil Hamborg Jensen
Senior adviser
National Food Institute
+45 35 88 74 68

A new test strategy for mixtures of some of the many chemicals that people are exposed to every day is being developed by 26 partners in a large EU project. The National Food Institute, Technical University of Denmark, is partner in the four-year project, which will result in the development of a freely available toolbox for use by authorities and researchers in future tests of relevant chemical cocktails.

People are exposed to many chemicals every day. However, current methods for testing the mixtures of chemicals we are exposed to from several sources during life are insufficient. In a new EU project called EuroMix a total of 22 European partners and four associated partners from outside the EU will work together to develop a tiered test strategy.

The focus will mainly be on the intake of chemicals from food sources, but the project will also involve other sources of food-related chemicals. Since people are exposed to an infinite number of chemical cocktails every day, the project partners will identify the chemicals that are the main contributors to the intake.

Tools for testing relevant chemical cocktails 

One aim of the project is to develop new models to measure the effect of various chemical cocktails and reduce the use of laboratory animals in the future. EuroMix will provide a test strategy for mixture testing based on new and already existing toxicological tests. The researchers will develop new models for the calculation of the risk of mixtures and they will conduct exposure assessments .

The work will result in a freely available, web-based toolbox for use by authorities and researchers in future tests. The toolbox can be used to measure the effect of relevant chemical cocktails. It also contains a practical guide on how to use the test strategy and perform risk assessment of chemical cocktails.

The project will help to harmonize the way risk assessments of chemical cocktails are carried out in the EU, Codex Alimentations and the United States.

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Euromix has received eight million Euro in funding from the EU’s framework programme for research and innovation, Horizon 2020. The project is described on the EU Commission’s website.

In March 2015 the National Food Institute concluded Denmark’s largest research project on chemical cocktail effects in food. Read about the results from the four-year project in the institute’s press release from 19 March, 2015: New knowledge strengthens risk assessment of chemical cocktails in food

The aim of the project along with the main results have been described in more detail in the booklet: Cocktail: Danmarks største forskningsprojekt om cocktaileffekter i fødevarer (pdf – available in Danish only).