Toxicogenomics and Cell-based Assays for Toxicology

  • Tong, Weida (Division of Systems Toxicology, National Center for Toxicological Research (NCTR), U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)) ;
  • Fang, Hong (Z-Tech, an ICF International Company at FDA's National Center for Toxicological Research) ;
  • Mendrick, Donna (Division of Systems Toxicology, National Center for Toxicological Research (NCTR), U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA))
  • Published : 2009.09.30


Toxicity is usually investigated using a set of standardized animal-based studies which, unfortunately, fail to detect all compounds that induce human adverse events and do not provide detailed mechanistic information of observed toxicity. As an alternative to conventional toxicology, toxicogenomics takes advantage of currently advanced technologies in genomics, proteomics, metabolomics, and bioinformatics to gain a molecular level understanding of toxicity and to enhance the predictive power of toxicity testing in drug development and risk/safety assessment. In addition, there has been a renewed interest, particularly in various government agencies, to prioritize and/or supplement animal testing with a battery of mechanistically informative in vitro assays. This article provides a brief summary of the issues, challenges and lessons learned in these fields and discuss the ways forward to further advance toxicology using these technologies.


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