UK's Lords seek changes in animal testing

A House of Lords report supports the use of animals in research but calls for greater efforts to seek alternatives.

Helen Gavaghan(gavers@supanet.com)
Jul 24, 2002

YORKSHIRE — In a report on the use of animals in scientific procedures, a House of Lords select committee said yesterday (24 July) that the practise is "morally acceptable" for both product testing and extending knowledge, but that more effort needs to be made to find alternatives.

In particular, the report recommends that a Centre for the Reduction, Refinement and Replacement (known as the 3Rs) of the use of animals in research should be established. This body would co-ordinate existing university research in the area. Currently, the report says, "the committee remains unconvinced" that all scientists always seek to avoid the use of animals and minimise suffering.

The report also advocates greater openness, fewer but better enforced regulations and more work to discover whether new strains (genetically modified and selectively bred) of animals suffer increased distress.

Scientific organisations have welcomed the report. In particular, says Sir George Radda, chief executive...

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