OECD Guidelines for the Testing of Chemicals, Section 4

Health Effects

2074-5788 (online)
Hide / Show Abstract

The OECD Guidelines for the Testing of Chemicals is a collection of about 150 of the most relevant internationally agreed testing methods used by government, industry and independent laboratories to identify and characterise potential hazards of chemicals. They are a set of tools for professionals, used primarily in regulatory safety testing and subsequent chemical and chemical product notification, chemical registration and in chemical evaluation. They can also be used for the selection and ranking of candidate chemicals during the development of new chemicals and products and in toxicology research. This group of tests covers health effects.

Also available in French
Test No. 404: Acute Dermal Irritation/Corrosion

Test No. 404: Acute Dermal Irritation/Corrosion You or your institution have access to this content


Hide / Show Abstract

This method provides information on health hazard likely to arise from exposure to liquid or solid test substance by dermal application. This Test Guideline recommends sequential testing strategies, which include the performance of validated and accepted in vitro or ex vivo tests for corrosion/irritation.

The albino rabbit is the preferable laboratory animal. The substance to be tested is applied in a single dose to a small area of skin (approximately 6cm²) of an experimental animal; untreated skin areas of the test animal serve as the control. The exposure period is 4 hours. Residual test substance should then be removed. The dose is 0.5ml (liquid) or 0.5g (solid) applied to the test site. The method consists of two tests: the initial test and the confirmatory test (used only if a corrosive effect is not observed in the initial test). All animals should be examined for signs of erythema and oedema during 14 days. The dermal irritation scores should be evaluated in conjunction with the nature and severity of lesions, and their reversibility or lack of reversibility. When responses persist to the end of the 14-day observation period, the test substance should be considered an irritant.

Also available in French
loader image
Visit the OECD web site