Welcome to the Evidence-based Toxicology (EBT) course. In medicine and healthcare, evidence-based medicine has revolutionized the way that information is evaluated transparently and objectively. Over the past ten years, a movement in North America and Europe has attempted to translate this revolution to the field of toxicology. The Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing (CAAT) within the department of Environmental Health and Engineering at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health hosts the first chair for EBT and the secretariat for the EBT Collaboration on both sides of the Atlantic. Based on the Cochrane Collaboration in Evidence-based Medicine, the EBT Collaboration was established at the CAAT to foster the development of a process for quality assurance of new toxicity tests for the assessment of safety in humans and the environment. Regulatory safety sciences have undergone remarkably little change in the past fifty years. At the same time, our knowledge in the life sciences is doubling about every seven years. Systematic review and related evidence-based approaches are beginning to be adapted by regulatory agencies like the Environment Protection Agency (EPA), the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), and the US National Toxicology Program. They provide transparent, objective, and consistent tools to identify, select, appraise, and extract evidence across studies. This course will showcase these emerging efforts and address opportunities and challenges to the expanded use of these tools within toxicology.
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