(1/352) Functional human corneal equivalents constructed from cell lines.

Human corneal equivalents comprising the three main layers of the cornea (epithelium, stroma, and endothelium) were constructed. Each cellular layer was fabricated from immortalized human corneal cells that were screened for use on the basis of morphological, biochemical, and electrophysiological similarity to their natural counterparts. The resulting corneal equivalents mimicked human corneas in key physical and physiological functions, including morphology, biochemical marker expression, transparency, ion and fluid transport, and gene expression. Morphological and functional equivalents to human corneas that can be produced in vitro have immediate applications in toxicity and drug efficacy testing, and form the basis for future development of implantable tissues.  (+info)

(2/352) Comparison of a rabbit model of bacterial endocarditis and an in vitro infection model with simulated endocardial vegetations.

Animal models are commonly used to determine the efficacy of various antimicrobial agents for treatment of bacterial endocarditis. Previously we have utilized an in vitro infection model, which incorporates simulated endocardial vegetations (SEVs) to evaluate the pharmacodynamics of various antibiotics. In the present study, we compared four experimental rabbit endocarditis protocols to an in vitro infection model in an effort to determine if these models are comparable. We have evaluated the activity of clinafloxacin, trovafloxacin, sparfloxacin, and ciprofloxacin in rabbit models against Staphylococcus aureus and Enterococcus spp. In vitro models were performed simulating the antibiotic pharmacokinetics obtained in the in vivo studies. Models were dosed the same as rabbit models, and SEVs were evaluated at the same time the rabbit vegetations were examined. Clinafloxacin and trovafloxacin were evaluated against methicillin-susceptible (MSSA1199) and -resistant (MRSA494) strains of S. aureus. Ciprofloxacin was studied against MSSA1199 and MSSA487. Sparfloxacin and clinafloxacin were evaluated against Enterococcus faecium SF2149 and Enterococcus faecalis WH245, respectively. We found that reductions in SEV bacterial density obtained in the in vitro model were similar to those obtained in rabbit vegetations, indicating that the SEV model may be a valuable tool for assessing antibiotic potential in the treatment of bacterial endocarditis.  (+info)

(3/352) Comparative in vitro-in vivo percutaneous absorption of the pesticide propoxur.

In vitro and in vivo skin absorption of the pesticide propoxur (2-isopropoxyphenyl N-methyl carbamate, commercially Baygon(TM) and Unden (TM); log Po/w 1.56, MW 209.2) was investigated. In vivo studies were performed in rats and human volunteers, applying the test compound to the dorsal skin and the volar aspect of the forearm, respectively. In vitro experiments were carried out in static diffusion cells using viable full-thickness skin membranes (rat and human), non-viable epidermal membranes (rat and human) and a perfused-pig-ear model. Percutaneous penetration of propoxur in human volunteers was measured by analysis of its metabolite (2-isopropoxyphenol) in blood and urine; in all other studies radiolabeled propoxur ([ring-U-(14)C]propoxur) was used. In order to allow for direct comparison, experimental conditions were standardized with respect to dose (150 microg propoxur per cm(2)), vehicle (60% aqueous ethanol) and exposure time (4 h). In human volunteers, it was found that approximately 6% of the applied dose was excreted via the urine after 24 h, while the potential absorbed dose (amount applied minus amount washed off) was 23 microg/cm(2). In rats these values were 21% and 88 microg/cm(2), respectively. Data obtained in vitro were almost always higher than those obtained in human volunteers. The most accurate in vitro prediction of the human in vivo percutaneous absorption of propoxur was obtained on the basis of the potential absorbed dose. The absorbed dose and the maximal flux in viable full-thickness skin membranes correlated reasonably well with the human in vivo situation (maximal overestimation by a factor of 3). Epidermal membranes overestimated the human in vivo data up to a factor of 8, but the species-differences observed in vivo were reflected correctly in this model. The data generated in the perfused-pig-ear model were generally intermediate between viable skin membranes and epidermal membranes.  (+info)

(4/352) Prediction of eye irritation from organic chemicals using membrane-interaction QSAR analysis.

Eye irritation potency of a compound or mixture has traditionally been evaluated using the Draize rabbit-eye test (Draize et al., 1944). In order to aid predictions of eye irritation and to explore possible corresponding mechanisms of eye irritation, a methodology termed "membrane-interaction QSAR analysis" (MI-QSAR) has been developed (Kulkarni and Hopfinger 1999). A set of Draize eye-irritation data established by the European Center for Ecotoxicology and Toxicology of Chemicals (ECETOC) (Bagley et al., 1992) was used as a structurally diverse training set in an MI-QSAR analysis. Significant QSAR models were constructed based primarily upon aqueous solvation-free energy of the solute and the strength of solute binding to a model phospholipid (DMPC) monolayer. The results demonstrate that inclusion of parameters to model membrane interactions of potentially irritating chemicals provides significantly better predictions of eye irritation for structurally diverse compounds than does modeling based solely on physiochemical properties of chemicals. The specific MI-QSAR models reported here are, in fact, close to the upper limit in both significance and robustness that can be expected for the variability inherent to the eye-irritation scores of the ECETOC training set. The MI-QSAR models can be used with high reliability to classify compounds of low- and high-predicted eye irritation scores. Thus, the models offer the opportunity to reduce animal testing for compounds predicted to fall into these two extreme eye-irritation score sets. The MI-QSAR paradigm may also be applicable to other toxicological endpoints, such as skin irritation, where interactions with cellular membranes are likely.  (+info)

(5/352) Pathology of ocular irritation with acetone, cyclohexanol, parafluoroaniline, and formaldehyde in the rabbit low-volume eye test.

The ocular irritation responses to 11 different surfactants and two concentrations of acetic acid and sodium hydroxide have been shown to depend on the extent of initial injury, despite marked differences in the processes leading to tissue damage. The purpose of these studies was to determine the extent to which this fundamental relationship applies to other nonsurfactants. Ten microl of acetone (ACT). cyclohexanol (CY), parafluoroaniline (PF), or 37% formaldehyde (FA) was directly applied to the cornea of the right eye of each rabbit. Eyes and eyelids were macroscopically scored for signs of irritation beginning 3 hours after dosing and periodically until recovery or 35 days. Tissues were obtained for light microscopic examination after 3 hours and on days 1, 3, and 35. Initial corneal injury was characterized quantitatively at 3 hours and I day using in vivo confocal microscopy (CM) and by postmortem quantitation of dead corneal epithelial cells and keratocytes using a Live Dead Assay (L/D, Molecular Probes) and scanning laser CM. Corneal changes over time were characterized quantitatively using in vivo CM performed at 3 hours and 1, 3, 7, 14, and 35 days. The changes with ACT were consistent with mild irritation. Corneal injury was limited to the epithelium and superficial stroma, with the mean normalized depth of injury (NDI) being less than 10% with the majority of regions showing no stromal injury. Changes with CY and PF were consistent with moderate to severe irritation, and FA caused severe irritation. Specifically, corneal injury by CY and PF tended to involve the epithelium and anterior stroma, with the mean NDI being 10.4% to 23.8%, while injury with FA involved the epithelium, deep stroma, and at times the endothelium. Interestingly, with FA significantly less injury was observed at 3 hours with a dramatic increase in injury observed at 1 day and thereafter. In conclusion, these results continue to support and extend our hypothesis that ocular irritation is principally defined by the extent of initial injury despite clear differences in the means by which irritants cause tissue damage. We believe this approach can be applied to developing alternative assays based on injury to ex vivo eyes or injury to an in vitro corneal equivalent system.  (+info)

(6/352) TestSmart-high production volume chemicals: an approach to implementing alternatives into regulatory toxicology.

This article examines the status and application of alternatives defined as replacements, refinements, and reduction for screening high production volume (HPV) chemicals. It specifically focuses on the Screening Information Data Set (SIDS), a series of toxicological tests recommended by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development to screen such chemicals. Alternative tests associated with acute, repeat-dose, genetic, and reproductive and developmental toxicity were examined at 2 meetings of academic, industry, and regulatory scientists and their status determined. Tests were placed in 1 of 3 categories: ready for immediate use, in need of or currently undergoing validation, or needing research/developmental work. With respect to traditional acute toxicity testing, the basal cytotoxicity approach was placed in the category of research with the up-and-down, fixed-dose, limit test, and the acute toxic class categorized as available for immediate use and the neutral red assay under validation. Cell culture methods that could provide information on acute target organ toxicity were all categorized in the research stage. Studies of the Ah receptor were placed under validation. All alternative tests for repeat-dose toxicity were placed in the category of research. With regard to genetic toxicity, the Ames, mouse lymphoma, and Chinese hamster ovary methods were considered ready for immediate use, while the in vitro micronucleus and Syrian hamster ovary assays were placed in the validation category. All alternatives for developmental toxicity, with the exception of gene chip technology, were placed in the category of validation. Gene chip technology is considered to be in the research stage. For reproductive toxicity, sperm motility and morphology were considered as ready for immediate use, with the other assays categorized as needing validation or in the research stage. Follow-up to these results is obvious. Work needs to be conducted to move those tests from the research stage to the validation and use stage. This is one approach to the development of alternatives to SIDS. Progress along these lines would apply not only to SIDS but also to toxicology in general.  (+info)

(7/352) A reply to Joseph Bernstein.

Dr. Bernstein suggests that anti-vivisectionists should be able to fill in a directive requesting that they receive no medical treatment developed through work on animals. It is replied that this would only be reasonable if research not using animals had long been funded as adequately and its results were currently available.  (+info)

(8/352) DNA repair-deficient Xpa and Xpa/p53+/- knock-out mice: nature of the models.

Xeroderma pigmentosum (XP) is a rare autosomal recessive disease in which repair of ultraviolet (UV)-induced DNA damage is impaired or is totally absent due to mutations in genes controlling the DNA repair pathway known as nucleotide excision repair (NER). XP is characterized, in part, by extreme sensitivity of the skin to sunlight, and XP patients have a more than 1000-fold increased risk of developing cancer at sun-exposed areas of the skin. To study the role of NER in chemical-induced tumorigenesis in more detail, the authors developed Xpa-/- homozygous knockout mice with a complete defect in NER (designated as Xpa mice or XPA model). Xpa mice develop skin tumors at high frequency when exposed to UV light, and as such, they mimic the phenotype of human XP. Moreover, the Xpa mice also appear to be susceptible to genotoxic carcinogens given orally. Based on these phenotypic characteristics, the Xpa mice were considered to be an attractive candidate mouse model for use in identifying human carcinogens. In an attempt to further increase both the sensitivity and specificity of the XPA model in carcinogenicity testing, the authors crossed Xpa mice with mice having a heterozygous defect in the tumor suppressor gene p53. Xpa/p53+/- double knockout mice develop tumors earlier and with higher incidences upon exposure to carcinogens as compared to their single knockout counterparts. Here the authors describe the development and features of the Xpa mouse and present some examples of the Xpa and Xpa/p53+/- mouse models' sensitivity towards genotoxic carcinogens. It appeared that the Xpa/p53+/- double knockout mouse model is favorable over both the Xpa and p53+/- single knockout models in short-term carcinogenicity testing. In addition to the fact that the double knockout mice respond more robustly to carcinogens, they also appear to respond in a very discriminative way. All compounds identified thus far are true (human) carcinogens, and, therefore, the authors believe that the Xpa/p53+/- mouse model is an excellent candidate for a future replacement of the chronic mouse bioassay, at least for certain classes of chemicals.  (+info)