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Topical toxicity

Topical toxicity includes effects occurring at the levels of the eye and the skin. Eye irritation and severe eye damage are two ocular local effects that are respectively reversible and non-reversible. Cosmetics Europe eye irritation programme developed and optimised several non-animal test methods to evaluate the ocular toxicity of substances, including cosmetic ingredients. As such, several test methods are OECD accepted test guidelines and can be applied widely also in other sectors. The eye programme now focuses on how these methods can be combined in an adequate way to address a wide array of ocular effects – for instance via the so called Defined Approaches — and improve the predictions across the entire range of classes for this endpoint. Skin irritation and corrosion are dermal damages respectively reversible and non-reversible. Cosmetics Europe has played a major role in developing numerous test methods that address these effects. In topical toxicity, beyond individual test methods, various test method combinations are now common practice, and have been published by the OECD in its guidance documents on Integrated Approaches for Testing and Assessment (IATAs).