Cefic-lri Programme | European Chemical Industry Council

EMSG36: Further Development and Scientific Evaluation of Appropriate Methods for Identification and Characterisation of Toxic Effects of Hormonally Active Substances on Reproduction in Birds as Part of Multi-Generation-Studies

Principal Investigator

Prof. Dr Ibrahim Chahoud
Institute of Clinical Pharmacology and Toxicology
Free University of Berlin
Garystrasse 5
D-14195 Berlin
Tel: +49 30 8445 1751
Fax: +49 30 8445 1761


Dr. R. Pfeil, Federal Institute of Consumers Health Protection and Veterinary Medicine (BgVV) Berlin
Dr. L. Niemann, Federal Institute of Consumers Health Protection and Veterinary Medicine (BgVV) Berlin


The effects of so-called ”endocrine disruptors” (EDs), i.e. hormone-like acting substances of natural or anthropogenic origin or compounds disturbing the endocrine system by other mechanisms, on reproduction are subject to extensive discussion worldwide. For better identification of such effects, regulatory organisations such as the OECD or EPA have proposed that additional investigations be conducted. An alternative approach is to improve the design of existing reproduction studies by inclusion of appropriate new endpoints facilitating the detection of hormone-mediated effects. This latter possibility is also considered in the broad discussion on further development of the OECD guideline(s) for investigating reproductive toxicity in birds. Additional endpoints to be included were discussed in detail during a scientific workshop held in 1999 at the Federal Institute of Consumers Health Protection and Veterinary Medicine in Berlin. This meeting resulted in a proposal of specific parameters to be tested for their suitability. In the process of parameter selection, the additional endpoints as recommended by the U.S. EPA were also taken into consideration. However, it must be acknowledged that the actual association between impaired reproduction and these endpoints has not been studied in sufficient depth. In this context the main objective of our research project is to contribute to the elucidation of these potential relationships. This is considered an essential prerequisite for further guideline development. In particular, questions and crucial points raised by the OECD (Avian Two-Generation Toxicity Test in the Japanese Quail. First Draft December 1999) shall be addressed. Experiments will be performed on the Japanese quail (Coturnix coturnix japonica) for which an extensive historical database is available.

Related Publications

K Grote, L Niemann, B Selzsam, W Haider, C Gericke, M Herzler, I Chahoud, Epoxiconazole Causes Changes in Testicular Histology and Sperm Production in the Japanese quail (Coturnix coturnix japonica), Environmental Toxicololgy and Chemistry 2008, published online: June 3, 2008.


K Grote, L Niemann, C Gericke, B Selzsam, I Chahoud, Effects of fentin hydroxide on reproduction of the Japanese quail (Coturnix coturnix japonica), Environmental Research 2005101, 81-88.


B Selzsam, K Grote, C Gericke, L Niemann, W Wittfoht, I Chahoud, Effects of methyltestosterone on reproduction in the Japanese Quail (Coturnix coturnix japonica), Toxicology 2005, 99, 327-334.

B Selzsam, L Niemann, C Gericke, I Chahoud, Suitability of some additional parameters in reproduction studies in Japanese quail: preliminary experience, Avian and Poultry Biology Reviews 2005, 16, 41-46.


L Niemann, B Selzsam, W Haider, C Gericke, I Chahoud, Effects of Vinclozolin on Spermatogenesis and Reproductive Success in the Japanese Quail (Coturnix coturnix japonica), Archives of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology 2004, 46, 528-533.

Timeline: July 2002 > June 2004

LRI funding: € 100 000

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