11967 - Applied Toxicology

Course Unit Page


This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

Good health and well-being

Academic Year 2022/2023

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course the student has the basic knowledge for the determination of toxicological aspects of xenobiotics, required for registration purposes and the exposure risk assessment. In particular, the student is able to: - know the experimental strategies in the animal model and the alternative methods for the assessment of toxicity mechanisms, - to conduct in vitro tests for the evaluation of toxicity mechanisms at the cellular and molecular level using esercitazionale activities single place.

Course contents

MODULE I Prof. Monia Lenzi

Organization of a toxicology laboratory: equipment, safety devices, procedures and GLP.

In vitro testing: suspended cell cultures: count, maintenance and use. Analysis of cell viability and proliferation: samples preparation and microscopic analysis; ; Isolation of peripheral blood lymphocytes.

Planning and execution of a study of mutagenesis; Planning and execution of a carcinogenicity study; Planning and execution of a study at the level of the reproductive system toxicity; Planning and execution of a local tolerance study. 

Laboratory TRAINING - Evaluation of cytotoxicity and genotoxicity of a xenobiotic: from cell culture preparation to microscopic analysis; ; Micronucleus test; Preparation, staining and mounting of a glass slide. Microscopic analysis and interpretation of results.

Flow cytometry: use in the analysis of the main cellular toxicological end-points.

MODULE II Prof. Fabiana Morroni

In vitro studies. Cell cultures and cytotoxicity tests. Alternative methods to animal testing in Toxicology: development, validation and application to the screening and characterization of organ toxicity.

In vivo studies. General principles, predictivity and selection of doses; aims of the studies. Acute toxicity studies: aims, lethality curves, limit of acute exposure; methods: experimental design, analyses and observations. Repeated dose toxicity tests versus acute toxicity studies, analyses and observations.

Methods in Ecotoxicology. Databases in Toxicology.

LABORATORY TRAINING - Cell culture: maintenance and use. Cell count and analysis of cell viability. Treatment with a test substance. Assessment of cell proliferation. Evaluation of the cytotoxicity of a xenobiotic. Learning to keep a good laboratory notebook.



G.Cantelli-Forti, C.L.Galli, P.Hrelia, M.marinovich - Tossicologia molecolare e cellulare - UTET, Torino, 2000.

Casarett & Doull - Elementi di Tossicologia - Casa Editrice Ambrosiana, Milano, 2013.

Materiale fornito a lezione dal docente.

Linee guida OECD

Teaching methods

Traditional [lectures and seminars]. The course includes laboratory training.

In consideration of the types of activities and teaching methods adopted, the attendance of this training activity requires the carrying out for all students of Modules 1 and 2 in e-learning mode and the participation in Module 3 of specific training on safety and health in the places of study. Information on dates and methods of attendance for Module 3 can be consulted in the specific section of the degree program website.

Assessment methods

The exam wil consist in an oral test aimed at assessing the student's understanding and knowledge of the topics set out during the course, and discussion on practical experiences carried out during the course.

Teaching tools


Office hours

See the website of Monia Lenzi

See the website of Fabiana Morroni