There are many ways to test chemicals for safety. Some tests involve treating living cells or bacteria growing in a petri dish with the chemical in question.
There are techniques that can determine whether a chemical causes mutations in bacteria or makes normal animal cells resemble malignant cancerous ones. There are also ways to compare the chemical structures of new compounds with those ofpreviously tested known compounds using various computer techniques. But when all is said and done, there is still no way we can be really sure that a chemical is safe (especially when we are dealing with long-term chronic health effects, such as cancer) without doing live-animal testing on rats or mice.
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