Experts respond to questions about animal experiments and outline the dilemmas that are involved. Should you test a new headache pill on animals? And new cancer medicine? Or can it be done differently? With this video, the Utrecht Animal Welfare Body wants to add nuance to the debate about animal experiments. The video was made in collaboration with Liftov.
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It is possible that laboratory animals have unexpected discomfort. Discomfort is the legal term for negative well-being, ranging from mild stress to severe pain. Laboratory animals are regularly monitored for this. If an audit reveals unexpected discomfort, act quickly and make a note of what is going on and what is being done to help others learn from it.
Researchers at Utrecht University and UMC Utrecht conduct veterinary and biomedical research. In addition to experiments that rely on cell and tissue culture techniques, computer simulations and human volunteers, this research occasionally involves experiments on animals. Laboratory animals are also used for education and training. A basic principle of all research conducted in Utrecht is that animals can experience a state of welfare and have an intrinsic value.
When planning and carrying out animal experiments, Utrecht University and UMC Utrecht are always striving for replacement, reduction and refinement of the animal experiment, the so-called '3 Rs'.
Utrecht University and UMC Utrecht have a joint 3R Stimulation Fund to support research into the replacement, reduction and refinement of animal experiments. It is one of the ways to participate in the globally desirable transition to animal-free innovation.
The basic principle underlying all animal research at Utrecht University and UMC Utrecht is the recognition that all animals have an intrinsic value. This means that animals have value for themselves, regardless of their utility for humans.
Pet owners can donate the body of a deceased companion animal to Utrecht University for educational purposes. This can be arranged with the vet in an Animal Donor Codicil.
The Experiments on Animals Act allows for the adoption of former laboratory animals, under certain strict conditions.
The following parties are involved in animal experiments at Utrecht University and UMC Utrecht.
Utrecht University and UMC Utrecht support the Code Openheid Dierproeven (Animal Experiment Transparency Code), and therefore strive for openness and transparency regarding animal experiments. This also means that an Annual report on laboratory animal science is published each year.
Every researcher should conduct scientific research with integrity, especially those researchers doing experiments with animals. We don’t want to provoke unnecessarily distress, kill laboratory animals because of poorly designed experiments, draw incorrect conclusions, or being influenced by parties who have an interest in the outcome.