Dr. Geert Verheyen – Centre of Expertise for Environmental Toxicology
Dr. Raymond Pieters – Institute for Risk Assessment Sciences (IRAS)
Dr. Colin de Haar – Institute for Risk Assessment Sciences (IRAS)
Dr. Hans-Juergen Ahr – Bayer HealthCare AG
The main objective of this project is the development of an approach/strategy that can be used to identify chemical allergens and if possible to discern respiratory from contact sensitizers. In order to accomplish this, the proposed study aims to identify sensitizing chemicals using human and murine in vitro data linked to murine in vivo data. We will apply the parallelogram approach, allowing comparison of in vitro data from human and mouse experiments (DC and peripheral blood mononuclear cells) and in vitro and in vivo data from mouse experiments (DC exposed in vitro and DC isolated after in vivo exposure). A novel aspect in our approach is to apply gene expression profiling (cDNA microarrays) to identify the genes that are influenced by exposure to model allergens. It should be demonstrated that contact allergens and chemical respiratory allergens provoke discrete changes in gene expression which may form the basis of robust method for the identification of chemicals that cause sensitization of the respiratory tract.
Final report and publications expected in 2006.