Whether you’re developing innovative consumer products, ground-breaking agrochemicals or advanced cosmetic products, investigating the effect of novel chemicals on health and the environment is a critical part of the development pathway. Eliminating toxic substances and understanding the effects of chemicals on people and planet is made easy with the latest predictive and mechanistic assays.

  • Channel investment into innovations that will meet stricter regulatory standards.
  • Advance future-proofed products that will see sustained market success.

When it comes to innovation, it’s the small details that make a big difference.

The challenge

Regulatory bodies such as the OECD are introducing stricter standards around toxicology studies and are enforcing precise methods and techniques. But identifying whether a compound has toxic potential is hard, impacts can be unpredictable and downstream consequences hard to track.

To understand what a toxicity assay readout means for your product you need a thorough understanding of the full mechanism of action and an appreciation of cross-species sensitivity. Testing for safety against the full toxicity spectrum is now critical for regulatory sign-off.

By safety screening thoroughly and early, developers see more products emerge from their development pipeline with long marketable life.

The solution

Companies across the world are already using our novel predictive and mechanistic assay services to:

  • Provide data for updates to reregistration dossiers in line with updated regulatory requirements.
  • Create detailed comparative data on toxicological risk across species.
  • Screen candidate compounds and invest only in those compounds that will pass regulatory approval and deliver future-proofed sales.
  • Develop products that are best for people and the planet.

We operate to the highest quality standards supported by our in-house program management and quality teams. We are a GLP-certified laboratory and can deliver both GLP and non-GLP studies, completing predictive, exploratory and discovery toxicology through:

OECD Tier 2 assays

Androgen receptor assay (OECD Test Number 458)

We use our AR-EcoScreen™ cell line, stably transfected with the AR-responsive luciferase reporter gene, to identify both activators and inhibitors of AR-dependent transcription.

Estrogen receptor assay (OECD Test Number 455)

The VM7Luc4E2 cell line, expressing estrogen receptors α and ß, is stably transfected with an ER-responsive luciferase reporter gene. The resulting assay can be performed in agonist and antagonist mode to identify chemicals that activate or inhibit ER-dependent transcription.

Steroidogenesis assay (OECD Test Number 456)

This in vitro test system uses the human H295R adenocarcinoma line to investigate a compound’s effect on steroid hormone biosynthesis, specifically 17ß-estradiol and testosterone.

Aromatase inhibition (OPPS.890.1200)

Human recombinant CYP19 microsomes are used to establish the risk of a compound activating the production of aromatase which, in turn, leads to the conversion of androgens to estrogens.

Bespoke thyroid hormone modulation assays

Regulatory concern is rising around compounds that might disrupt thyroid hormone signals, especially considering the link to neurological development in juveniles. Our bespoke thyroid assays measure trigger points for thyroid hormone disruption, from the regulators to the cotransporters. With cross-species models, we evaluate species sensitivity to evaluate human relevance.

Our assays include:

    • Sodium /iodide symporter (NIS) assay
      • A spectrophotometer method to measure the uptake of iodide into rat follicular cells. This sensitive assay measures a chemical’s effects on the first step of thyroid hormone synthesis


    • Deiodinase (DIO) assay
        This robust panel of sensitive assays evaluates inhibition of all three master regulators (DIO 1,2 and 3) of thyroid hormone signaling. Available in rat, dog and human models


    • Thyroperoxidase (TPO) assay
      • This assay evaluates the effect of compounds on early-stage oxidation and incorporation of iodide to produce thyroglobulin. Available in rat, dog, pig and human models


    • Thyroid hormone receptor assay
      • For a full activation evaluation


  • Cross-species comparative induction of UDP-glucuronosyltransferase (UGT) expression

Our human relevance carcinogenicity capabilities include:

  • Evaluating data to create a robust hypothesis
  • Designing and running studies to confirm the mechanism of action in rodent hepatocytes (in vivo and in vitro)
  • Performing human relevance studies in vitro with primary human hepatocytes, including secondary toxicity evaluation
  • Specifying the nuclear receptors involved
  • Cross-species liver metabolism studies
  • Analyzing and interpreting results


New molecular entities can induce broad inflammatory responses and adverse reactions – characterized as cytokine release syndrome. Using the most effective protocols for each test substance, we detect release profiles on a full cytokine panel.

With world-class immunology expertise, our biology team design a bespoke plan of work to evaluate the immuno-safety of your product.

Want to find out more?

Our multi-disciplinary teams mitigate risk by employing knowledge, foresight and thought leadership to all our client’s diverse programs enabling the highest chance of success. Get in touch to find out how we can support you.