Gaithersburg, MD – The Environmental Protection Agency has updated a policy which will result in fewer products required to be tested in the eyes of rabbits. The policy is the outcome of a multi-year project between industry, the EPA and the non-profit testing laboratory, the Institute for In Vitro Sciences (IIVS). Coordinated by The Accord Group, the project successfully identified three non-animal tests which can be used to in place of the rabbit test to determine the eye irritation potential of commonly used household cleaning products. The majority of cleaning products in the US do not undergo pre-market registration. However, those which carry anti-microbial claims are considered pesticides and animal testing is required by the EPA before they can be sold. “This policy illustrates the constructive way that industry and the regulatory community can work together to replace the use of animals in testing,” comments Dr. Rodger Curren, current CEO of IIVS and lead scientist on the project. “It took a lot of commitment and resources from industry and the EPA to turn this concept into a reality.” It is expected that these tests will provide useful information on the eye irritation of other types of products and result in even less animal testing in years to come.