New investment in the 3Rs

16 January 2013

Posted by: UAR news team

Category: Communications & media

new-investment-3rs–building.jpgUnderstanding Animal Research welcomed a new £1m investment into the 3Rs which was announced today. This money will fund a new professorial chair into developing technologies which it is hoped will be able to replace some animal research. The role will be based at Queen Mary, University of London’s Blizard Institute where scientists have been working on growing human cells and tissues to create 3D models for use in skin and cancer research.

The money, provided by the Dr Hadwen Trust, has been made possible through a £1m donation from Alan Stross. It reflects the UKs commitment to the 3Rs – refinement, replacement and reduction of animal research – which aims to create better science with fewer animals. Currently, animal research can only be done where there is no other option.

While research such as this is important for biomedical research, at present it is not possible to completely replace the use of animals in research. Furthermore, many of the non-animal methods – computer models, cell cultures and more – are used to complement the animal research.

Speaking on Sky News, UAR CEO, Wendy Jarrett, said:

“Almost every medicine that we have available today is here because it involved animal research at some point during its development. So if you're looking at antibiotics or anaesthetics or organ transplants or medicines for cancer or vaccines... every one of those has involved animal research at some in its development and over the last 40 years every Nobel Prize, bar one, for medicine or physiology has been dependent on animal research.”