S3: Collaborative Development of Predictive Toxicology and Safety Assessment Resources

Collaborative Development of Predictive Toxicology and Safety Assessment Resources - Connecting People and Data for Decision-Making

Collaborative Development of Predictive Toxicology and Safety Assessment Resources, Barry Hardy, OpenTox Asia 2018

Barry Hardy


Douglas Connect




I will discuss experiences and case examples within the history of OpenTox’s first decade as we have navigated the journey from a vision of needing interoperability of resources to a developing practice of integrating evidence supporting applications evaluating the safety of new products including drugs, chemicals, cosmetics and new complex materials emerging from nanotechnology research and development. Through OpenTox we have aimed to provide access to an increasing amount of scientific data, new methods and resources and to bring people, science, technology and data together into a community effort supporting collaborations aimed towards the goal of a “Safer World by Design”, combining the design of new and novel products, while simultaneously protecting human and environmental health.

Solving such major challenges today requires the engagement of all stakeholders and greater resources than any of us can wield individually. To do so, we must work together to plan experiments, describe data and how to make it accessible, usable and actionable for specific purposes - ranging from scientific research to industry consortia and regulatory acceptance of information from new methods. Within OpenTox, we collaborate to develop specifications of the open standards and knowledge required to develop integration of resources in predictive toxicology supporting safety assessment applications. We need a common language, formally integrated within an ontology, to achieve semantic interoperability between resources. combined with the provision of distributed data and models aligned according to best practices supported by the international OpenTox community.

In this talk I will provide an overview of:

  • A Brief History of OpenTox and its Principles;
  • Best practices in Data Management and Harmonisation;
  • Learnings on Collaborative Infrastructure Development;
  • OpenRiskNet, as a community effort developing an open engineering infrastructure supporting risk assessment;
  • European-Japan collaboration as demonstrated by Garuda-OpenTox developments;
  • Combination of in silico and in vitro data as integrated evidence associated with Adverse Outcome Pathways;
  • Emerging Practices in Evidence-based Assessment;
  • Applications supporting drug discovery, cosmetics ingredient evaluation and nanotechnology product design.


Looking forward, I discuss challenges and proposed activities to bring people and diverse resources to the same table to accelerate international collaboration, that will support conversations and knowledge activities, leading to strong and rewarding outcomes.