3Rs news

3Rs news from Switzerland and abroad

3RCC publishes press release on 3Rs survey in Switzerland

The press release published on 23 December 2018 presented some top-line results of a survey conducted among researchers working with and/or having an interest in alternatives to animal testing in Switzerland. It showed that they are committed to applying the so-called 3Rs principle because they are concerned about animal welfare and because they want to improve the scientific quality of their research, whereas legal requirements are not their main motivation. More info: https://swiss3rcc.org/2018/05/18/442/

Save the date: 3RCC to organise Swiss 3Rs Day on 2 September 2019

The 3RCC will organise the one-day 3Rs event on 2 September 2019 at the Hotel Kreuz in Bern. The event commemorates the 60 years of the 3Rs principles published by Russel and Burch in 1959 with the book “The Principles of Humane Experimental Technique”. It will offer lectures and presentations of recent research in each of the 3Rs. You will find more information about the event on the website in due course. More info: https://swiss3rcc.org/category/education

Basel court rules initiative demanding basic rights for primates lawful

On another but slightly related note, the constitutional court of the canton of Basel city has ruled that a popular initiative aiming to include basic rights for primates in the constitution is admissible. According to the think tank Sentience Politics, which submitted the initiative in 2017, the goal of the initiative is not to ban experiments on primates, but research should respect the basic rights of the animals. Basel’s parliament considers the initiative unlawful and still has the right to appeal the decision and challenge it in the Federal Court. More info: https://bazonline.ch/basel/stadt/Basler-PrimatenInitiative-zulaessig/story/30921478

Results of survey on NIH sex-inclusion policy

A recent publication shows the results of a survey conducted to determine the attitudes and perceptions of National Institutes of Health (NIH) section members toward the implementation of a NIH policy requiring investigators to consider sex as a biological variable within their grant submissions. The authors conclude on improving attitudes toward the sex-inclusive policy at NIH and that a statistically significant number of grants are addressing sex as a biological variable appropriately in their submissions.  More info: www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30539677

Assessment of combined exposure to multiple chemicals

A recent joint publication from governmental institutions, regulatory agencies, academia and research institutes maps how different ongoing EU research projects contribute to the current data needs and methodologies for assessing the risk from combined exposure to multiple chemicals. The authors also identify remaining challenges that need addressing. These projects contribute to the development of in silico, in vitro and exposure assessment methodologies applicable in a tiered framework. They also support the development of joint epidemiological-toxicological approaches for mixture risk assessment and help researchers prioritise mixtures of concern. More info: www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0160412018308420

Toward good in vitro reporting standards (GIVReSt)

A recent publication summarizes a series of initiatives geared towards improving the quality of in vitro work and its reporting, that shall ultimately lead to Good In Vitro Reporting Standards (GIVReSt). If many areas have developed reporting standards and checklists to support the adequate reporting of scientific efforts, in vitro research still has no generally accepted criteria. Such a culture may undermine trust in the reproducibility of animal-free methods. Quality reporting priorities are to ensure the completeness and transparency of information provided, as well as making information digestible and easy to grasp, compare and further analyse. More info: https://www.altex.org/index.php/altex/article/view/1229

Upcoming deadlines

Abstract submission deadline for FELASA congress in Prague: 31 January

The Federation of European Laboratory Animal Science Associations’ 14th FELASA congress will take place from 10 – 13 June 2019 in Prague, Czech Republic. This scientific and educational event offers presentations on recent research finding about the use and welfare of animals in experiments with a special focus on this year’s topic: the correct reporting of animal research. The abstract submission deadline is 31 January 2019. More info: http://www.felasa2019.eu/

Fondazione Guido Bernardini offers two animal care scholarships for technicians

Technicians involved in the care of animals used in biomedical research may apply for a FGB technician scholarship offered by Fondazione Guido Bernardini. They will get training in laboratory animal care and attend a course at a research facility. The application deadline is 1 February 2019. More info: https://www.fondazioneguidobernardini.org/en/news/technician-training-scholarship-2019.html

Reproducibility day at University of Zurich on 5 February in Zurich

The Centre for Reproducible Science at the University of Zurich is organising workshop on reproducibility of research for UZH students, researchers, administrative and technical staff on 5 February 2019. Experts from UZH as well as invited speakers including editors from journals such as Nature will hold presentations about challenges in reproducibility and practical solutions. https://www.reprozurich.org/

Norecopa course on application of PREPARE guidelines 19 March in Copenhagen

Norway’s National Consensus Platform for the advancement of the 3Rs (Norecopa) and a housing supplier are organising a one-day course on 19 March 2019. The course built around the application of the PREPARE guidelines targets scientists interested in learning techniques to increase the validity of their animal experiments. Registration deadline is 25 February 2019. http://scanbur.com/Files/Images/PDF/03.2019_Academy_Are%20you%20PREPAREd.pdf