Chemical regulators have overreached

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The costs — both in animal lives and euros — of the European REACH legislation on chemical testing are escalating. Thomas Hartung and Costanza Rovida argue for a suspension of certain toxicity tests.

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Figure 1: Numbers too large to handle.
Figure 2: The biggest piece of pie.


  1. 1

    Rovida, C. & Hartung, T. Re-evaluation of Animal Numbers and Costs for In Vivo Tests to Accomplish REACH Legislation Requirements for Chemicals Transatlantic Think Tank for Toxicology (2009); available at or

  2. 2

    Pedersen, F., de Bruijn, J., Munn, S. & van Leeuwen, K. Assessment of Additional Testing Needs Under REACH — Effects of (Q)SARs, Risk Based Testing and Voluntary Industry Initiatives. Joint Research Centre Report EUR 20863 (2003).

  3. 3

    van der Jagt, K., Munn, S., Tørsløv, J. & de Bruijn, J. Alternative Approaches can Reduce the Use of Test Animals Under REACH. JRC Report EUR 21405 EN (2004).

  4. 4

    Janer, G. Hakkert, B. C., Slob, W., Vermeire, T. & Piersma, A. H. Reprod. Toxicol. 24, 97–102 (2007).

  5. 5

    Hartung, T. Nature 460, 208–212 (2009).

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Hartung, T., Rovida, C. Chemical regulators have overreached. Nature 460, 1080–1081 (2009) doi:10.1038/4601080a

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