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Toxicol In Vitro. 2011 Oct;25(7):1281-93. doi: 10.1016/j.tiv.2011.04.015. Epub 2011 Apr 29.

Modelling acute oral mammalian toxicity. 1. Definition of a quantifiable baseline effect.

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  • 1School of Pharmacy and Chemistry, Liverpool John Moores University, Byrom Street, Liverpool L3 3AF, United Kingdom.


Quantitative structure-activity relationships (QSARs) provide a useful tool to define a relationship between chemical structure and toxicity and allow for the prediction of the toxicity of untested chemicals. QSAR models based upon an anaesthetic or narcosis mechanism represent a baseline, or minimum, toxicity, i.e. unless a chemical acts by another, more specific, mechanism, its toxicity will be predicted by such models. The aim of this investigation was to develop baseline models for the acute toxicity of chemicals to mammals (rat and mouse) following the oral route of administration. The availability of such baseline toxicity models for mammalian species can provide a probe for testing new chemicals with respect to their molecular mechanism of toxicity. Multiple-regression type structure-toxicity relationships were derived . (i.e., from oral log LD(50)(-1) data for mammalian species (rat and mouse) and the 1-octanol/water partition coefficient (log P) of classic non-polar narcotics). Subsequently, these models were used to distinguish between reactive chemicals of different mechanistic domains and baseline toxic chemicals. Comparison of measured toxicity data for oral rat and mouse LD(50) with predictions from baseline QSAR provides a means of identifying mechanistic categories and for categorising more specific acute mechanisms.

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