Grants, awards & surveys

Updates on research grants, awards and surveys published by the 3RCC.

Results of survey on 3Rs in biological and biomedical research laboratories

The Zurich-based association Forschung für Leben (Research for Life), conducted a Swiss national survey on the attitude of researchers in the life sciences on the 3R principles. Conducted in early 2016, the survey was completed by more than 500 individuals. While diverse opinions were expressed, some interesting finding and patterns emerged which directly relate the aims of the swiss 3RCC.

  • In respondents over 40 years of age, only 10% indicated that the 3R principles were taught in their undergraduate courses. Optimistically however, in those under 30, 44% already knew about the 3Rs at this stage.
  • With regards to both initial reduction of animals used in experimentation, and refinement of analysis techniques, only 26% of respondents indicated they often or always took advantage of a biostatistician in their department.
  • While only a quarter of respondents indicated that they made use of pilot studies, 55% said that those results had led to major revisions of the main experiment.
  • Only a fifth of participants were able to completely replace the use of animals using in vitro or alternative technology.

The survey presents an excellent snapshot of research attitudes and practices from early 2016; ones that hopefully have continued to improve, and others to be encouraged to move forward. The full results of the survey, with commentary, are available in German.

John Hopkins CAAT: 2019 science-based refinement awards

The Johns Hopkins Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing (CAAT) is now accepting proposals for the 2019 Science-Based Refinement Awards. These awards focus on research projects to enhance the housing, handling, and/or experimental procedures for laboratory animals or that can reduce animal use by (for example) identifying areas of research and testing where animal models lack reproducibility and translational value. Hence, the small grants are intended for those who work hands-on with animals, such as animal welfare scientists, veterinarians, and animal care technicians, as well as for researchers who conduct systematic reviews and meta-analyses of animal studies. For 2019, two awards of $5,000 each will be offered. There are no Facilities and Administrative Costs allowed on these awards. Studies with animals must be non-invasive, with the possible exception of obtaining blood for biochemical measurements (and, in this case, animals should be trained to cooperate during venepuncture). Preference will be given to studies that have broad applicability (More info).