Lords support animal testing but call for alternatives
- By: Roger Dobson
Animal experiments are necessary, but more needs to be done to develop and promote alternative methods, says the House of Lords Select Committee on Animals in Scientific Procedures.
In a new report the committee recommends the setting up of research units to find ways of reducing the need for animals and replacing them.
“There is scope for the scientific community to give a greater priority to the development of non-animal methods,” it says. “The UK Government should use their influence to urge the EU to make the development and validation of replacements for animal experiments a priority, particularly in toxicology.”
While acknowledging that the United Kingdom has the tightest regulations on animal experiments in the world, it says the regulations have become unnecessarily bureaucratic.
The report recommends that section 24 of the 1986 Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act, the confidentiality clause, should be repealed. “Specific justification should then be made for