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Dermal Irritation


Products that come into contact with the skin should be tested for potential skin irritation and/or corrosivity, in order to protect consumers from potentially hazardous materials. In vitro skin irritation assays are economical alternatives to in vivo animal and human tests, and are ideal for screening of raw materials and final formulations, and for some regulatory labeling purposes.

In vitro skin irritation and corrosivity assays at IIVS offer a wide range of alternatives to traditionally-used in vivo animal tests for predicting the dermal irritation, corrosivity, cytotoxicity, phototoxicity, and/or anti inflammatory potential of test materials. A tiered approach may be recommended, as each dermal in vitro assay is unique in terms of its applicability, sensitivity, prediction model, and its compatibility with specific test materials. The anticipated aggressiveness and/or physio-chemical properties (e.g., solubility) of the test material are often considered when determining the most appropriate assay to use.

At IIVS, a positive and negative control are run with each assay. Specialized protocols may be prepared as requested through consultation with an IIVS Study Director.

Select from the menu at left for more information about individual dermal irritation assays. Each assay section will include an overview, applications, and brief Step by Step procedures.