UCL team propose use of alternate solvents to DMSO following research indicating low dose toxicity

Researchers based at University College London (UCL) and the Western Eye Hospital, Imperial College, London, have published research findings suggesting that the ubiquitously used aprotic solvent, DMSO (dimethyl sulfoxide), may be toxic at concentrations below 10% (v/v). Previously, use of the solvent at concentrations <10% was understood to be safe and nontoxic leading to its regular use as a solvent for dissolving small hydrophobic drug molecules. Commenting on the research, the authors of the study stated that, "we recommend that other methods (such as micelle/liposomal formulations) are used in preference to DMSO for solubilizing drugs, but where no alternative exists, absolute DMSO concentrations are calculated and reported".