Advancing the use of noncoding RNA in regulatory toxicology: Report of an ECETOC workshop

Achim Aigner, Roland Buesen, Tim Gant, Nigel Gooderham, Helmut Greim, Jörg Hackermüller, Bruno Hubesch, Madeleine Laffont, Emma Marczylo, Gunter Meister, Jay S. Petrick, Reza J. Rasoulpour, Ursula G. Sauer, Kerstin Schmidt, Hervé Seitz, Frank Slack, Tokuo Sukata, Saskia M. van der Vies, Jan Verhaert, Kenneth W. WitwerAlan Poole*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


The European Centre for the Ecotoxicology and Toxicology of Chemicals (ECETOC) organised a workshop to discuss the state-of-the-art research on noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs) as biomarkers in regulatory toxicology and as analytical and therapeutic agents. There was agreement that ncRNA expression profiling data requires careful evaluation to determine the utility of specific ncRNAs as biomarkers. To advance the use of ncRNA in regulatory toxicology, the following research priorities were identified: (1) Conduct comprehensive literature reviews to identify possibly suitable ncRNAs and areas of toxicology where ncRNA expression profiling could address prevailing scientific deficiencies. (2) Develop consensus on how to conduct ncRNA expression profiling in a toxicological context. (3) Conduct experimental projects, including, e.g., rat (90-day) oral toxicity studies, to evaluate the toxicological relevance of the expression profiles of selected ncRNAs. Thereby, physiological ncRNA expression profiles should be established, including the biological variability of healthy individuals. To substantiate the relevance of key ncRNAs for cell homeostasis or pathogenesis, molecular events should be dose-dependently linked with substance-induced apical effects. Applying a holistic approach, knowledge on ncRNAs, ‘omics and epigenetics technologies should be integrated into adverse outcome pathways to improve the understanding of the functional roles of ncRNAs within a regulatory context.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)127-139
Number of pages13
JournalRegulatory Toxicology and Pharmacology
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016


  • Adverse-outcome-pathway
  • Biomarker
  • Gene expression
  • Noncoding RNA (ncRNA)
  • Phenotypic consequence
  • Regulatory toxicology


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