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New OARS WEEL for Decamethylcyclopentasiloxane (D5) is available for public comment. The 45-day public comment period will end on November 28, 2015. Please send comments to Ann Parker at ann.parker@uc.edu by this date.


Save the Date!! for the NEW Risk Assessment Seminar Series. TERA has stared a new monthly seminar series on risk assessment. Join us the 3rd Thursday of each month to learn about various "hot" topics in risk assessment. The seminar is located in room G17 in the Kettering Laboratory Building (160 Panzeca Way) on the Medical Campus at the University of Cincinnati from 11:00am-noon. Our first seminar is November 20th, on "Using Causal Analysis for Evaluating Environmental and Health Issues" by Dr. Charles Menzie, the Global Executive Director for the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC) and also a Principal with Exponent Inc.


Don't Believe Everything Thats on a Blog: The Facts About Dr. Dourson and C8.

A recent blog article appeared at http://ringoffireradio.com/2015/10/01/dupont-expert-testifies-that-his-relationship-to-industry-is-like-jesus-hanging-out-with-prostitutes/ in regards to Michael Dourson's testimony as a fact witness at a recent trial.  The article defames the goals and intentions of the independent science-based organization Toxicology Excellence for Risk Assessment (TERA).  The article’s statements about TERA do not follow from the evidence presented at the trial, nor from information readily available on TERA’s website. Moreover, the article is mistaken or omits relevant information about TERA in every instance. If you choose to read the blog article, enclosed in total below the bullets below, please note that:

  • TERA was hired by a contractor for the State of West Virginia to establish a health-based screening level for C8 in 2002.  TERA scientists got an award from the State of West Virginia for their efforts.  The blog statement that TERA was "hired by DuPont to establish a health-based screening level of the toxin known as C8,” is not correct. 
  • The lawyer at the trial directed Dr. Dourson to to confirm that “selected" work was industry funded.  However, the lawyer only selected industry work, leaving out 2/3rds of TERA's work done for government and other nonprofits---as the TERA website shows (http://www.tera.org/about/FundingSources.html).  Such omission seems unreasonable.
  • The blog article wrote that "Dr. Dourson stated he likened his relationship to the industry as 'Jesus hanging out with prostitutes.'”  Actually, the lawyer at the trial asked this as a question to which Dr. Dourson answered affirmatively no.  TERA’s scientifically independent and neutral policy does not allow it to advocate for any particular product or chemistry, or industry, government or NGO position.  Once again, the blog article is in error.
  • The blog article wrote that "that in some years more than 50% of its work is “industry or industry-related.” However, in only 2 out of 21 years was TERA's industry work more than 50%; for the other 19 years, government work predominated.  Once again, such omission seems unreasonable. The blog article wrote that the "company’s Board of Directors includes Vice-Chair Gregery S. Romshe of the Procter & Gamble Company.”  However, TERA’s Board of Directors has 12 folks, of whom 2 are from industry, 3 from universities, 3 are consultants, and 4 are from NGOs.  Once again, such omission seems unreasonable.
  • Michael Dourson was subpoenaed as a fact witness to describe TERA's work for the State of West Virginia.  He attended this trial as an employee of TERA.  The blog statement that “Dr. Dourson was hired to defend DuPont against the claims of Carla Bartlett," is also incorrect. 

    Toxicology Excellence for Risk Assessment will join the Department of Environmental Health, at the University of Cincinnati’s, College of Medicine on August 1, 2015.  TERA will be known as the Toxicology Excellence for Risk Assessment Center (the TERA Center at UC).

    TERA’s 21 year history includes development of new methods for assessing potential human risk, risk assessment positions on hundreds of individual chemicals or mixtures, and web-based information systems such as the International Toxicity Estimates for Risk (ITER) risk value database at the National Library of Medicine’s Toxnet, the award-winning KidsChemicalSafety website with three partners (NSF International, the Cincinnati Children’s Drug & Poison Information Center and Harvard Superfund Research Program), and the Risk Information Exchange (RiskIE) that is available at the Alliance for Risk Assessment (TERAara), which is a collaborative of many different and diverse organizations.  By joining forces with the talented staff of the Department of Environmental Health, TERA has even greater opportunities to advance the science and practice of risk assessment and to contribute high quality analyses that help protect public health and the environment.  In turn, the Department of Environmental Health will parlay the TERA Center’s efforts to further extend its mission to improve the quality of life by identifying the mechanisms of disease and injury due to environmental exposures and genetic factors, and by developing effective methods of preventions and interventions to improve public health.

    We are excited about the possibilities, and with our new UC colleagues, look forward to the future, where we will collectively continue to provide our government, industry and non profit sector sponsors with high quality and independent analysis, assessments and research.  

    TERA’s mission, focus, extent of work and websites will not change, and you can reach us at our old email addresses until December 31, 2015.  New contact information will follow later in July/August.



    Project Highlights


    Beyond Science & Decisions: Workshop 9. Workshop 9 will be held in Cincinnati for two days within the period June 9-11.  Key topics for discussion include several case studies on adverse outcome pathways (AOPs), and an alternatives assessment framework for addressing risk from flame retardants.  Information will be posted at http://www.allianceforrisk.org/ARA_Dose-Response.htm


    Be a KidsChemicalSafety.org STAR!! Your organization can become  a STAR by becoming a corporate sponsor for the KidsChemicalSafety.org website. Click here for details on sponsorship.


    Independent Workshop on Ozone NAAQS Science and Policy. The workshop was held in April providing an independent evaluation and synthesis of key considerations for approaching the difficult and complex ozone NAAQS decision. Details and a recording of the webcast are available at http://www.tera.org/Peer/ozone/index.html .


    OARS Activities with WEELs. Revised WEEL documentation for Butyraldehyde and 2-Chloropropane. Public comment period is closed. Final WEEL will be available soon. New OARS-WEEL for Octamethylcyclotetrasiloxane (D4), 3-Nitro-1,2,4-triazol-5-One (NTO), and cis-1,1,1,4,4,4-Hexafluoro-2-butene (HFO-1336mzz-Z) is now available. D4 has been posted. 

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