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In-vitro safety testing of cosmetics products 

In-vitro safety testing with ALS 

In cases where new ingredients or formulations are being tested, ALS performs some sort of in-vitro safety test for ocular or skin irritation prior to engaging in human testing. We offer numerous in-vitro models for eye and skin including both cell based and chemical based assays. Our experts have over 20 years of experience developing and performing these types of studies.


The OptiSafeTM in-vitro ocular irritation test is a standardised and quantitative acute ocular irritation test method that ALS uses to determine the irritation potential of cosmetics, creams, shampoos, toiletries, cleaning agents, and other consumer products. The product to be tested is applied to a semi-permeable membrane (“ocular membrane") which is a material developed to be similar to the layer of tissue on the outside of the cornea. When the sample moves through the ocular membrane, it contacts a macromolecular matrix. This matrix has one component that is similar in structure and organization to macromolecules within the cornea and a second component that predicts damage to molecules related to the immune response and cell viability.

 Why OptiSafeTM  is becoming the preferred in-vitro test for cosmetics

OptiSafeTM  is really the state-of-the-art test for in-vitro ocular safety of cosmetics with numerous advantages over other common tests, such as HET-CAM or BCOP. The test is the highest accuracy and sensitivity for mild and moderate irritants. It is low cost. It has a fast turnaround, sometimes as little as one week.

EpiOcularTM  OECD 492

The OptiSafeTM in vitro Acute Ocular Irritation Test Method is a cell based standardised, comprehensive, and quantitative acute ocular irritation test system that predicts ocular irritation based on a substance's potential for macromolecule disruption.

HET-CAM Severe Ocular Irritation & Corrosion Assay

This test is used to determine if a substance is a severe ocular irritant or corrosive. Effects are measured by the onset of hemorrhage, coagulation, and vessel lysis. The method followed is as described; NIH publication No. 10-7553- Published 2010: HET-CAM IS(A).


The BCOP test method is an organotypic model that provides short-term maintenance of normal physiological and biochemical function of the bovine cornea in-vitro. In this test method, damage by the test chemical is assessed by quantitative measurements of changes in corneal opacity and permeability with an opacitometer and a visible light spectrophotometer, respectively. Both measurements are used to calculate an IVIS, which is used to assign an in vitro irritancy hazard classification category for prediction of the in vivo ocular irritation potential of a test chemical.

Toxicological Review & Assessment

ALS offers toxicological review of cosmetic and Over the Counter (OTC) drugs by board certified toxicologist. Assessments include acute and chronic toxicity evaluation, and can include inhalation assessment for sprays or powders. Assessment of children’s products is also available.

lady putting on makeup


Please see our human clinical safety capabilities.



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More safety testing services

ALS also offers full-service human clinical testing to meet your needs.