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Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public HealthCAAT

Green Toxicology

Alexandra Maertens

Coordinator: Alexandra Maertens (

The Green Toxicology project seeks to work in tandem with the Green Chemistry movement in developing less toxic products, safer processes, and less waste and exposure. Green Toxicology provides a framework for integrating the principles of toxicology into the enterprise of designing safer chemicals to minimize the potential for toxicity as early in production as possible by leveraging 21st century toxicological tools—including in silico and in vitro—to allow toxicology to help chemists “design out” undesired human health and environmental effects.

Dr. Maertens will co-chair a session on improving hazard assessments for sustainable chemistry at the upcoming Green Chemistry Conference, June 15-17th in Reston, Virginia. Full details here.

Last year, we presented at the Green Chemistry Conference and authored a textbook chapter, in collaboration with Nick Anastas, about toxicology aimed at chemistry students. This year, we have submitted a proposal for a symposium on Green Toxicology for the 2017 Green Chemistry conference and will continue to develop our educational materials.

Specifically, we are focusing on using our website to act as a clearinghouse for information, training, and news for both chemists and toxicologists to:

  • promote a greater awareness of in vitro and alternative toxicology and how it can be integrated into hazard assessment at the R&D stage
  • provide training for toxicologists interested in learning about chemoinformatics and “big data” techniques
  • help toxicologists and chemists talk to one another

Additionally, we will develop a course on Green Toxicology that will be made publicly available via Coursera. The course will be instruct toxicologists and chemists interested in how 21st century toxicology can be used to guide the development of safer chemicals.

Lastly, we are working with Apple Inc. on the process of “greening” their supply chain. Finally, we are continuing our work to use high-throughput/high-content data to illuminate the molecular mechanisms of toxicity.