Workshop on EFSA Guidance on the benchmark dose approach

1 March 2017

EFSA’s Scientific Committee recently updated its Guidance on use of the benchmark dose (BMD) approach and is holding a workshop on 1-2 March 2017 to present the updated elements to partners and inform them about a new web-based tool for BMD analysis (EFSA-Proast platform) currently under development. The workshop should also promote working towards a common understanding – in Europe and beyond – of the BMD approach and applying it in a harmonised way within and outside Europe.

Toxicity studies are conducted to identify and characterise the potential adverse effects of a substance. The data obtained in these studies may be further analysed to identify a dose that can be used as a starting point for risk assessment. The BMD approach extends the use of dose-response data from studies in experimental animals to better characterise and quantify potential risks from chemicals in the food chain. In use at EFSA since 2009, the experience gained from its application and recent methodological developments led EFSA’s Scientific Committee to update its guidance on how EFSA’s Scientific Panels apply the BMD in their scientific assessments.

Participants invited to the workshop include EFSA staff and experts from its Scientific Panels who deal with risk assessment of chemicals in the food chain. Representatives of the following organisations are also invited to participate: European Medicines Agency, European Chemicals Agency, European Commission’s DG SANTE and its Scientific Committees, Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives, and non-EU risk assessment bodies. Risk assessors from EU Member State food safety authorities working on dose-response modelling are also invited.

To meet the interest expressed by EFSA partners and stakeholders who cannot join the workshop in person, EFSA will video stream the event live on its website and provide on-demand video of the workshop afterwards. A link to the live stream will be published on this page shortly. 

The participants will discuss the following topics (full programme available below):

  • Comparison of NOAEL and BMD approaches in establishing health-based guidance values
  • Specification of the BMR: statistics vs. biology
  • Models to be used and their parameters
  • Model averaging vs. single models analysis
  • BMD flow chart and establishing the BMD confidence interval


For information on the content of the workshop or on the guidance document, please email: Bernard.bottex [at]