New OpenTox Local Chapter
The OpenTox Association has a new local chapter – this one, in the innovative Research Triangle area around Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina.
The new North Carolina Chapter grew out of an initiative to expand OpenTox activities in regions where the association has been active and has enjoyed support. During the OpenTox USA meeting last July at Duke University, attended by locally-based as well as non-local scientists and regulators, it was decided that the Raleigh-Durham area would be a perfect location for such an endeavor and plans for a local chapter were set in motion. On hand was Dr. Thomas Hill of the EPA, who explains his motivation for participating. “OpenTox helps us transcend the artificial barriers we have built in our own minds and create a free flow of information and alternative streams of data that can only enrich our work. I support OpenTox and encourage involvement of scientists and clinicians from all disciplines.”
The Research Triangle is a natural spot for the new chapter. Raleigh-Durham is home to several top-tier research universities (Duke University, University of North Carolina, North Carolina State), government entities at the cutting edge of predictive toxicology and safety assessment (EPA, NIEHS, RTI), and several companies prominent in the toxicology field (GSK, Syngenta, Biogen). The mission of the local OpenTox chapter will be to harness the intellectual strength of this region and provide an environment where ideas, open communication, and professional collaboration can flourish.
Raleigh-Durham has already hosted several OpenTox events, most recently OpenTox USA 2017. That meeting drew scientists from academia, the private sector, and government to discuss topics such as as omics data analysis in safety assessment, data management/toxicology data, data-driven AOPs, ITS approaches, and toxicity testing/nanomaterial exposures. OpenTox USA 2018 will also be held in the Raleigh-Durham area of North Carolina.
The new local chapter hopes to provide an environment where professionals interested in the field of predictive toxicology can network to find new opportunities, discuss and promote relevant projects, and collaborate with like-minded individuals. Like OpenTox as a whole, the new chapter’s goal is to unite professionals in a community-based exchange of open knowledge, methods, and tools in the fields of predictive toxicology, risk assessment, and safety assessment.
*Contact chapter member Dr. Noffisat Oki (firstname.lastname@example.org) for more details on how to participate in the virtual kick-off meeting.