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Alternative methods

12 - 12 - 2018

Syngenta tries to switch from rats to artificial intelligence

The evaluation of the safety of phytosanitary product (insecticides, herbicides, "pesticides") sometimes requires inhalation tests in rats. These tests involve killing animals at the end of the study to examine their lungs and entire body.


Syngenta is trying a new approach with the chlorothalonil fungicide.


This company has assembled together data on particle size, a computer model of respiratory functions and tests on human cells of the nasal mucosa to predict the irritant potential of the product on the respiratory tract. It did not use animal testing.





The rapport of this was submitted to the Environmental Protection Agency for approval. This official agency of the United States ensures the best protection of the populations. The dossier can therefore only be accepted if the scientific information it contains is at least as satisfactory as the animal tests regarding the questions asked about the use of chlorothalonil.


If accepted, industries will be encouraged to use this approach. This would also be a step towards for the approval of substances such as chemicals, household or medical based on non-animal testing.