OECD Guidelines for the Testing of Chemicals, Section 4

Health Effects

2074-5788 (online)
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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.

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Test No. 473: In Vitro Mammalian Chromosomal Aberration Test

Test No. 473: In Vitro Mammalian Chromosomal Aberration Test You or your institution have access to this content


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The purpose of the in vitro chromosome aberration test is to identify agents that cause structural chromosome aberrations in cultured mammalian somatic cells. Structural aberrations may be of two types: chromosome or chromatid.

The in vitro chromosome aberration test may employ cultures of established cell lines, cell strains or primary cell cultures. Cell cultures are exposed to the test substance (liquid or solid) both with and without metabolic activation during about 1.5 normal cell cycle lengths. At least three analysable concentrations of the test substance should be used. At each concentration duplicate cultures should normally be used. At predetermined intervals after exposure of cell cultures to the test substance, the cells are treated with a metaphase-arresting substance, harvested, stained. Metaphase cells are analysed microscopically for the presence of chromosome aberrations.

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