kDPRA: An in chemico Method to Characterize the Skin Sensitization Potency of Chemicals

September 13, 2019

While the skin sensitization hazard of substances can readily be identified using non-animal methods, the classification of potency into UN GHS sub-categories 1A and 1B remains challenging. The kinetic direct peptide reactivity assay (kDPRA) is a modification of the DPRA (OECD TG 442C) wherein the reaction kinetics of a test substance towards a synthetic cysteine-containing peptide is evaluated. For this purpose, several concentrations of the test substance are incubated with the synthetic peptide for several incubation times at 25°C. After the respective incubation time, the reaction is stopped by addition of the fluorescent dye monobromobimane (mBBr). The highly reactive and non-fluorescent mBBr rapidly reacts with unbound cysteine moieties of the model peptide to form a fluorescent complex. The remaining non-depleted peptide concentration is determined thereafter by fluorescence measurement at precisely defined time points. Kinetic rates of peptide depletion are then used to distinguish between two levels of skin sensitization potency, i.e. to discriminate between CLP/UN GHS sub-categories 1A and 1B. During an in house validation (Wareing et al., 2017) 35 of 38 substances with LLNA-based sensitizing potency were correctly assigned to the potency sub-categories, and the predictivity for 14 human data was similarly high. These results warranted the kDPRA for further validation. Here we present the results of a ring trial testing 24 blind-coded chemicals in seven labs. In parallel we present the extension of the kDPRA database to further assess the predictive capacity of the assay. Eventually the kDPRA should be used as a part of defined approach(es) with a quantitative data integration procedure for skin sensitization potency assessment.