MEPs reject animal welfare proposals
Dr Hadwen Trust for Humane Research
Laboratory animal welfare
The Dr Hadwen Trust for Humane Research has criticised members of the European Parliament's Agriculture and Rural Development (AGRI) Committee for their views on lab animal welfare proposals.
The Committee voted on proposals to update EU Directive 86/609 on animal experiments and rejected virtually every measure aimed at improving welfare despite opposition from other MEPs.
MEPs failed to support proposals that would restrict the number of times an animal can be re-used in multiple experiments, or set limits on the levels of pain they can endure.
However, the AGRI Committee did support the creation of new EU and member state facilities to develop more alternatives to animal experiments.
Current European efforts to develop non-animal alternatives are too narrowly focused to impact on the majority of research areas where animals are used.
While much progress has been made in finding alternatives to animals in regulatory toxicity testing, most animals in EU laboratories are used in basic medical research where far less effort has been focused.
MEPs have supported proposals that would see increased funding and coordination to bridge this gap in non-animal replacement research.
The European Commission's proposal for a revised Directive was published in November last year, containing many balanced and progressive measures such as a ban on the use of great apes, a phase-out of use of offspring from wild-caught primates, compulsory ethical review, and widening the law's scope to cover sentient invertebrates, foetal animals and animals used in basic medical research.
The Dr Hadwen Trust funds a medical research programme at British universities to develop new non-animal techniques such as 3D models of disease, advanced human brain imaging equipment and computer modelling.
The charity is leading the campaign for an EU-wide strategy to vastly increase investment in new non-animal replacement methods through the new EU legislation.
This year, the Dr Hadwen Trust will fund medical-research projects in areas such as epilepsy, bone disease in childhood leukaemia, brain cell imaging, nanotoxicity testing and abdominal pain studies.
Scientists are increasingly interested in using and developing techniques to advance medical research without the use of animals, according to the Dr Hadwen Trust for Humane Research (DHT).
The Dr Hadwen Trust is inviting grant applications for proposals to develop, validate or implement non-animal methods that contribute to the replacement of animal experiments in medical research.
The Dr Hadwen Trust for Humane Research has called for an 'alternatives revolution' to speed up the development of research techniques to replace animals in medical research and testing.
22 July 2009 - The Dr Hadwen Trust for Humane Research has reacted to Home Office statistics that reveal that Britain’s animal experiments have reached a 17-year high.