Working Group


Following publication of the COT interim position statement on per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), a COT subgroup has been set up to undertake the Committee’s own consideration of the evidence base and risk assessment of these substances.

Last updated: 03 April 2024

Please note this page is currently under construction. 


The aim of the subgroup is to review the evidence to support human health risk assessment of per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) by UK Government Departments and Agencies in the context of existing and legacy exposure through food, drinking water and the environment.


The COT has considered PFAS on a number of previous occasions, and in 2022 published a statement:  TOX_2020_60_First draft statement on published EFSA PFAS Opinion ( on the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) opinion in which the scientific basis of the new EFSA tolerable weekly intake (TWI) for the sum of four PFAS was reviewed. The Committee has subsequently been asked to consider what further guidance can be provided to support human health risk assessments undertaken by UK Government Departments and Agencies.

In 2023, the COT published an interim position: Interim Position Paper on Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances | Committee on Toxicity ( and this subgroup was set up to undertake the consideration.

Terms of Reference

COT PFAS subgroup Terms of Reference – first draft

To provide guidance to UK Government Departments and Agencies to support human health risk assessments of per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) where exposures to existing and legacy PFAS is occurring through food, drinking water and other environmental media. This will include: 

  • Undertaking an independent review of toxicological and epidemiological data, focusing on a number of critical endpoints, and considering the biological relevance of the endpoints assessed.
  • Considering the toxicokinetics of PFAS.
  • Determining whether different PFAS can be grouped for assessment and how this can be done.
  • Deriving a HBGV or a number of HBGVs as the data allow.

The subgroup will endeavour to follow the guidance from the Joint COT and COC Synthesis and Integration of Epidemiological and Toxicological Evidence (SETE) subgroup in undertaking this assessment. 


Agendas and minutes from the COT's PFAS Subgroup meetings.


A report will be published here when the review is complete.


Details of Members of the PFAS Subgroup.