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Exploring an ecotoxicity database with the OECD (Q)SAR Toolbox and DRAGON descriptors in order to prioritise testing on algae, daphnids, and fish

Abstract : The European regulation on chemicals (REACh) places emphasis on reduction of systematic toxicity testing, thus fostering development of alternative methods. Consequently, we analysed acute toxicity data gathered by the Japanese Ministry of Environment for three species belonging to three different trophic levels (i.e., Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata 72-hour EC50, Daphnia magna 48-hour EC50 and Oryzias latipes 96-hour LC50). This paper investigates the relationships between the chemical structure and both the toxicity of the chemicals and the cross-species differences in sensitivity. The physicochemical properties of the chemicals were represented by the categories they belonged to in several widely-used categorisation schemes implemented by the freely available OECD (Q)SAR Toolbox and by quantitative molecular descriptors using DRAGON software. The outputs of these software products were analysed and compared in terms of quality of prediction and biological interpretation. Amongst the categorisations implemented by the OECD Toolbox, those focussing on bioaccumulation or biotransformation appeared to be the most interesting in terms of environmental prediction on a whole set of chemicals, in particular as the predicted biotransformation half-life is strongly dependent on hydrophobicity. In predicting toxicity towards each species, simple linear regression on logP performed better than PLS regression of toxicity on a very large set of molecular descriptors. However, the predictions based on the interspecies correlations performed better than the QSAR predictions. The results in terms of cross-species comparisons encourage the use of test strategies focussing on reducing the number of tests on fish.
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Cléo Tebby, Enrico Mombelli, Pascal Pandard, Alexandre R.R. Pery. Exploring an ecotoxicity database with the OECD (Q)SAR Toolbox and DRAGON descriptors in order to prioritise testing on algae, daphnids, and fish. Science of the Total Environment, Elsevier, 2011, 409 (18), pp.3334-3343. ⟨10.1016/j.scitotenv.2011.05.029⟩. ⟨ineris-00961761⟩

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