Environmental and health problems related to endocrine disruption have increased in recent decades. Abnormalities in the reproductive system of various aquatic species (fish, molluscs, amphibians, reptiles) as well as human fertility have been linked to chemical pollution threats.
Key aims of the EU?s REACH Regulation include improving awareness of the risks associated with particular chemicals and ensuring that industry is able to assess hazards and identify and implement appropriate risk management measures to protect humans and the environment. In particular, the introduction of suitable alternatives should allow the progressive substitution of the most dangerous chemicals.
Test programmes within REACH do not include specific tests for endocrine-disrupting properties because there are no internationally agreed methodologies or criteria available (ECHA Guidance for Substances of Very High Concern [SVHC]).
The LIFE EDESIA project aims to contribute to improved implementation of the REACH Regulation by providing at least one suitable alternative for bisphenol A/BPA, phthalates and parabens. Anticipated applications of the alternatives will include hard plastics, PVC-based medical devices for phthalates, and antimicrobials (personal care products and over-the-counter drugs) for parabens. The potential alternatives will be tested for absence of mutagenicity/genotoxicity and persistence/bioaccumulation by (Q)SAR; the in vitro tests will provide a comprehensive screen for endocrine-disrupting properties, in order to implement REACH attention toward EDCs as ?substances of equivalent concern?.
These objectives will be achieved by the following actions:
Expected results: Anticipated outcomes from the project activities will include: