Abich Laboratory celebrated its 15th year of activity with an information day, held on October 13th in Baveno, Piedmont, Italy; and by introducing cosmetic companies and technicians a new in vitro sensitization testing strategy.
As the lab itself stated, «the risk of skin sensitization leading to contact dermatitis is a key focus of safety testing for cosmetic products and topical medical devices» but, to date, «most sensitization tests are performed in vivo». A new approach to sensitization testing through in vitro steps is now being regulated (OECD 442-C, -D, -E), leading to greater accuracy, and solving ethical concerns related to testing substances on volunteers.
This new design «uses a set of in vitro tests as part of an Integrated Approach to Testing and Assessment (IATA) to determine the key steps of skin sensitization: the capacity of substances to create covalent bonds with skin proteins, the cellular inflammatory response; the activation of dendritic cells that leads to sensitization».
The first step of this approach builds upon the in chemico Direct Peptide Reactivity Assay (DPRA) in order to verify «whether substances are able to bind skin proteins, measuring the depletion of bound peptides through High Pressure Liquid Chromatography (HPLC)».
The second «is the measurement of the activation of key inflammatory functions and Anti-Oxidant Response Elements (AREs) in keratinocytes through luciferase in vitro assays (Keratinosens™)», whereas the last step aims to measure «the changes in key surface markers in cultured human cells» and relevant tests (U-SENS™, h-CLAT) «analyse the change in the expression of markers such as CD86 and CD54 that are involved in the dendritic response and activation of the allergic reaction». Abich is a pioneer in offering this kind of in vitro testing procedures, and cosmetic ingredients screening, in Italy.