Animal welfare & alternatives
#WW Wednesday Web award - Smallpox Through Time
In Elizabethan times smallpox killed more people than TB, leprosy, plague and syphilis combined.
Virtual rats' whiskers
A new computer model of rats' whiskers is helping scientists understand how rats process the sense of touch.
European chemicals industry to develop non-animal toxicity tests
The European Chemical Industry Council (Cefic) has launched a £450,000 research project into finding non-animal methods of toxicity testing.
New research suggests macaques experience self-doubt and uncertainty when making decisions.
Black-footed kittens born through IVF
IVF has helped millions of couples achieve pregnancy, and not only in humans: it was with IVF that scientists recently produced these amazingly cute kittens.
UK scientist wins prize for improving animal welfare
Each year the National Centre for the Replacement, Refinement and Reduction of Animals in Research (NC3Rs) awards a prize for innovative research which has an impact on the use of animals in life sciences.
Artificial intestine reduces animal tests
An artificial human digestive system is replacing the use of animals in some tests to see how medicines are absorbed, The Times reported last week.
Focus on fluorescent filming
The Scientist reported on its top ten life-science innovations for 2010 this week.
How much effort on alternatives? The answer is a lot
Our attention was drawn this week to a relatively new European initiative called AXLR8, a consortium which aims to accelerate progress in developing alternatives to animals for safety testing.
Deadly rinderpest virus eradicated
The UN has just announced that rinderpest, a virus that used to cause deadly outbreaks in cattle, has been eradicated in the wild.
No retirement for chimp colony
186 chimps currently housed in unofficial retirement in the Alamogordo Primate Facility in New Mexico are to be re-housed in the Southwest National Primate Research Center.
Tasmanian Devil genome sequenced
The Tasmanian Devil is at risk of extinction in the wild due to a transmissible cancer passed on when one animal bites another.
Why older women fail to conceive
As women get older the chances of infertility, birth defects and developmental disabilities go up.
Shellfish toxin testing
The recently published Annual report (2009) of the Animals Scientific Procedures Inspectorate and Division highlights progress towards suitable alternatives to replace the use of mice in the testing for toxins in shellfish.
Ferrets, flu, fish and pharmaceuticals
Grants worth £4 million have just been announced for 13 science projects that aim to minimise the use of laboratory animals and improve their welfare.
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