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National Center for Computational Toxicology (NCCT)

EPA Communities of Practice

Chemical Prioritization

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The purpose of the EPA Chemical Prioritization Community of Practice (CPCP) is to foster communications on the planning, conduct and interpretation of the ToxCast™ chemical prioritization research project (www.epa.gov/comptox/toxcast). The ToxCast™ project is designed to predict or forecast chemical toxicity.


  • Was established in December 2005 to advance research into the utility of computational chemistry, high-throughput screening (HTS) and various toxicogenomic technologies for EPA.
  • Includes individuals from EPA’s  Office of Research and Development (ORD) Labs and Centers, scientists outside of EPA with expertise in HTS, toxicogenomics, predictive toxicology or bioinformatics, NTP Biomolecular Screening Branch and the NIH Chemical Genomics Center (NCGC).
  • Is chaired by a member of the NCCT, but draws on the expertise of scientists across ORD and the Agency as needed for specific issues.  
  • Includes over 100 individuals from over 20 public and private sector organizations.

Monthly meetings are held at EPA's RTP campus, on the fourth Thursday of the month, from 11am-Noon EST/EDT. Teleconferencing is available. Every other month the CPCP meeting is hosted jointly with the NTP Biomolecular Screening Branch, and the NIH Chemical Genomics Center.

For more information on the CPCP, or to be added to the meeting email list, contact Monica Linnenbrink at linnnenbrink.monica@epa.gov or 919-541-1522.

CPCP Charter includes the following functions:

  • Organize periodic meetings or conference calls (at least quarterly) around specific issues or projects, with goal of identifying state of the science, research needs, consensus positions.
  • Organize outreach to broader HTS and toxicogenomics scientific community to demonstrate EPA's interest and obtain input and participation.
  • Report regularly to the Director of the NCCT and the ORD CTISC on issues, progress, and outputs.

CPCP Goals are to advise on:

  • Development of key partnerships and collaborations with external groups that can facilitate development of the information needed in ToxCast™. These groups include the Office of Air and Radiation (OAR), Office of Prevention Pesticides and Toxic Substances (OPPTS), Office of Water (OW); the NTP and NCGC; the ACC, CropLife, EDF, and other external groups to help develop a consensus on the specific directions and contents of ToxCast™.
  • Identification of a set of chemicals for the ToxCast™ demonstration project.
  • Selection of data domains and specific assays based upon pre-existing knowledge and within the available resources.
  • Selection of key target toxicities for initial focus of the ToxCast™ proof of concept.
  • The impact of metabolizing capability, or lack thereof, on the efficiency of the screening assays.
  • Development of a bioinformatic approach to mining the resulting data and identifying signatures of concern.
  • Reporting the utility of assay results and analysis techniques to categorize pilot chemicals according to known toxicity patterns; revise methods and approaches as dictated by results.
  • Expanding the ToxCast™ project beyond proof of concept, and carrying out a prospective assessment of the approach using chemicals currently entering a traditional testing process.

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