An official consensus statement from a meeting of scientific experts in April on the identification of endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) was released by the BfR in Germany.
The statement concluded that the controversial issue of potency “is not relevant” for the identification of a compound as an EDC, although ED effects above regulatory limit doses may not be relevant for hazard identification. This now paves the way for the EU Commission to develop the scientific criteria for the identification of EDCs, which has been delayed because of the controversy about the principles that should guide the identification of EDCs. The statement noted that potency is an important factor to consider for the hazard characterisation but not for the hazard identification.
The identification of a chemical as an endocrine disruptor has to rely on weight-of-evidence evaluations of both adversity and mode of action together. It was agreed that endocrine activity on its own should not trigger a chemical’s identification as an endocrine disruptor. Further, adverse effects or modes of action consistent with endocrine disrupting characteristics but demonstrated to be non-specific effects secondary to another toxic effect are not considered appropriate for identification of endocrine disruption. The questions about the existence of thresholds for ED effects and the significance of non-monotonic dose response relationships require further research but are not a requirement for the identification of EDCs according to the statement. It was recognised that there are several areas of uncertainty for effective regulation and that knowledge gaps should be addressed, together with future research in a number of areas, including exposure assessment of EDCs, clarification of ED modes/mechanisms of action and improved test methods for the identification of EDCs.
The consensus statement can be found here: Consensus statement
For information on how this may impact your business, or further information on the registration of plant protection products, biocides or general chemicals contact JSC on +44 (0)1423 520245.
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