The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has incorporated two of L’Oréal’s scientific techniques in the OECD Test Guidelines.

Developed to replace animal testing, the U-SENS method and the Human Corneal Epithelium Eye Irritation Test (HCE EIT) were developed by the firm at its research laboratories.

They are intended to ensure the safety of ingredients present in a finished cosmetic product, enabling the development of a broad range of alternative assessment techniques.

“The U-SENS technique is designed to detect and predict skin allergies.”

L’Oréal research and innovation executive vice-president Laurent Attal said: “40 years of research into skin reconstruction and alternative methods are now bearing fruit. This is a major breakthrough in the replacement of animal testing.”

The U-SENS technique is designed to detect and predict skin allergies, which are known to occur as a delayed immunological reaction upon repeated contact with a sensitising substance.

The technique is based on in-vitro tests that are conducted on human cells expressing a specific immunity marker.

Developed to assess eye irritation, the HCE EIT method builds upon a human cornea epithelium model that was reconstructed in-vitro to imitate human histological and morphological properties.

A specific protocol is used to measure the cellular viability of the tissue in three-dimensions (3D).

Both the methods were recognised last year by the EU Reference Laboratory for Alternatives to Animal Testing (EURL-ECVAM).