Toxicology and Ecotoxicology News is a new journal containing international reviews in toxicology, environmental toxicology and ecotoxicology of the highest scientific quality. Edited by Chris Atterwill and Sheila O'Hare, it differs from current toxicology journals in providing information on issues of interest to a wide range of scientific disciplines and at many levels. The journal should appeal to toxicologists in academia, regulatory and commercial institutions and to those involved in health and safety issues.
Each issue provides at least three major review articles covering topical issues in addition to a number of shorter pieces.
For example, in Vol. 1 No. 4, the issue of regulatory toxicology and the development of animal alternatives is addressed. This highly emotive topic has provoked considerable international debate over the use of animal alternatives and spans many areas of toxicology. The article deals with some of the current questions and developments in this area in a clear and unbiased fashion.The essence of a good review article is a complete and unprejudiced account of the understanding in a particular field. Unfortunately such reviews are rare. I was extremely encouraged to find that TEN produces a holistic view of the topics covered, without including blinkered accounts from the authors concerned of the kind found in some review articles in the scientific literature. An innovative addition is the inclusion of comments from the editorial team at the end of many of the review articles.
Another feature of TEN is the inclusion of departmental and personnel profiles in the journal. This provides an interesting insight into the work of some important research units and the working lives of toxicologists world-wide. In the first issue, the Medical Research Council Toxicology Unit, at Leicester University, is profiled, providing a useful resume of the history of the unit and an account of its relocation from Surrey in May 1993. The article provides a brief description of research activities within each major section of the unit and the scientists undertaking the research under the direction of Lewis Smith. Hopefully, the journal will provide an update on the MRC Toxicology Unit in the future.
TEN has also provided several career profiles in its first year of publication. In the third issue a profile on Bob Combes, who is scientific director of the Fund for the Replacement of Animals in Medical Experiments is included. The article not only highlights his interests and achievements, but also mentions the postgraduate research students who have studied under him. The inclusion of articles of this kind will be welcomed by many readers.
Each issue has a section that provides up-to-date information on book publications and new journals, advertisements, including appointments, ethical contract testing and technical services. The journal also contains a comprehensive diary section that contains details of both national and international conferences on all aspects of toxicology.
The clear and comprehensive presentation of such information is extremely beneficial and draws the reader's attention to important meetings and conferences. As we know, the only way we can attend conferences in the present economic climate is to present work, so the inclusion of details on abstract submission deadlines is essential.
TEN would be a useful addition to any departmental library with an interest in toxicology. I wish it every success.
Stephen Faux is lecturer in toxicology, University of Birmingham.
Toxicology and Ecotoxicology News
Editor - Sheila O' Hare and Chris Atterwill
ISBN - ISSN 1350 4592
Publisher - Taylor and Francis
Price - £115.00 (institutions), £45 (individuals)
Pages - Four a year