Screening tools are just that – screens to pull up things that might be of interest so you can look at them harder.  Odds are good that the screen will identify junk as good stuff – meaning that you need to toss in a second or third or more iterative review that takes into account more information.  A great example just got published on chemical hazard screening tools: “A Comparative Evaluation of Five Hazard Screening Tools.”  See how several commonly used tool stack up on some not unusual chemicals”:


Dibutyl phthalate (DBP), Benzisothiazolinone (BIT),  1,2,5,6,9,10-Hexabromocyclo-dodecane (HBCD)

CONTEXT, CONTEXT, CONTEXT.  What are the exposures - the dose, frequency, route, etc.?  How solid and pertinent is the data? You may get a number or a color out of a tool, but what does it really mean?  What kinds of decisions should you make on the basis of these screening tools?

It's way too easy to generate blacklists with mindless algorithms.


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