“New assessment methods bring new uncertainties”

“New assessment methods bring new uncertainties”


A challenge really that we
need to address is how we can make risk assessors
and risk managers more comfortable with using these
new approaches and I truly believe a way to tackle that
is to be more systematic in how we identify uncertainties
and describe them because they’re different than
we’re used to. I mean if you take an
animal test for example, we’ve been using these
tests for decades and risk assessors know that
a rodent has different biology to a human but because
we’re familiar with that uncertainty and in fact we
even have default assessment factors, will
they feel comfortable with it? Whereas if we take an
In vitro system for example based on a stem cell,
what about the difference in biology there, is a stem
cell in an In vitro system very much reflective of
human biology or not and if not how uncertain are we? So there’s an example
of where, what I call, unfamiliar uncertainties
are really an obstacle to decision makers taking this
new approach as seriously.

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