A team of researchers from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health has developed what the team calls a map of the world’s chemical landscape. Essentially, it is a catalogue of 10,000 chemicals for which safety data is available that can be used to predict the toxicity of some 90,000 other substances in consumer products for which no such information exists.
The team developed the map to help provide regulators, manufacturers and scientists a clearer picture of the harmfulness of chemicals for which there is little research. The team accomplished this by creating a searchable database of 816,000 research studies conducted on 10,000 chemicals registered in Europe, including information about whether they pose a hazard to humans and what type.
“There are 100,000 chemicals in products we use every day and we are missing 90% of the safety information we need,” says study leader Thomas Hartung. Testing all of them would be cost prohibitive. Instead, he says, “we have come up with a computer model that can tell us which chemicals are similar to untested ones to give us an idea of what types of hazards they are likely to pose.”
The team created a map, grouping chemicals by their known toxicities. Hazards that a chemical may cause include allergic skin reaction, serious eye damage, toxicity when inhaled or swallowed, flammability and organ damage. An untested chemical could be entered into the computer map, next to all similar chemicals. If the chemical landed in a part of the map where similar chemicals are considered safe, that chemical could be deemed safe. If it landed in a place where its neighbors are known to cause skin allergies, for example, the chemical would be given that label. If a manufacturer protested that characterization, it could then do the testing necessary to try to prove that label wrong. If it falls in a gray area, testing would be needed.
The researchers call this process of characterizing untested chemicals “read-across.” In conjunction with the database development, Hartung’s group has steered a consensus process with international experts to develop guidance on how to conduct a read-across.
“We want to make it possible that any substance–even a substance not yet synthesized–can be entered into the program and its possible safety problems can be predicted,” Hartung says. “This could help in identifying the better substances to develop cleaner products or exchange those in common use with safer ones.”
IMEC Technologies provides Safety Management Software to increase worker safety and aid compliance. IMEC’s Safety Management Software will manage inspections and audits, provides hazard identification, incident reporting, management of corrective and preventative actions from generation to closure. IMEC provides lock out tag out software solutions that will allow users to create lockout tagout procedures using an intuitive Mobile App and Manage Lockout Tagout Procedures, also the Review and Execution of those Lockout Tagout Procedures using the Mobile App. Annual Lockout Tagout Procedures audits are conducted using a Mobile App. The Mobile Inspection App allow users to perform inspections and audits, for example the system can be used as a Fire Extinguisher Barcode Inspection Software system to manage monthly fire extinguisher inspections and general fire safety inspections and also to record safety observations and manage corrective actions, anywhere and anytime. The solution can be used as a fire extinguisher barcode inspection software system or life safety inspection system to aid compliance in Higher Education, Healthcare, Industrial and Commercial Organizations. Benefits from a Fire Extinguisher Barcode System include the elimination of paperwork and reducing the burden of compliance with regulations such as NFPA, The Joint Commission. The Incident Reporting App allows users to easily and quickly report incidents, hazards and near-misses, these are then sent to the appropriate people for action and are managed to closure. Web Apps provide features such as, setup, management, scheduling tools, analysis, reporting and dashboards etc with the ability to report incidents to government bodies such as OSHA and RIDDOR. HazMat T&T is a hazardous waste management software solution designed for Environmental Service Companies and companies who generate a large quantity of hazardous waste. The solution tracks hazardous waste from cradle to grave aiding compliance, providing accurate waste inventory, increasing waste handling efficiency, reducing risk and also helps manage waste costs. HazMat T&T Hazardous Waste Management Software can be deployed in a number of deployment scenarios, from Large Hazardous Waste Generators, tracking their hazardous waste at their site to Environmental Service and Waste Management Companies using it track and manage hazardous waste at transfer and disposal sites. For more information visit our website www.imectechnologies.com