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Defining Toxic: Federal agencies look to cells, not animals, for chemical testing

Government scientists are launching an ambitious collaboration to shift the testing of potentially toxic chemicals away from animals to methods that use high-speed automated robots. The robots would test chemicals on human cells at various concentrations, generating data relevant to humans faster and more cheaply than current methods, researchers from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced in Boston last week during a teleconference at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. The project is also described in a paper in the Feb. 15 issue of Science.

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