Tuesday, 16 June 2015

Replacement, Reducation and Refinement; Laboratory Animal Welfare Symposium 2015

Each year, the University of Edinburgh holds a Laboratory Animal Welfare and Alternatives Symposium. This takes its inspiration from the concept of ‘The 3Rs’: Replacement, Reduction and/or Refinement, with the aim of removing animals from laboratories or at the very least ensuring they experience good welfare.

This year’s symposium was held in the College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine’s Chancellors building and was a great success. More than 100 staff and students attended to hear some extremely interesting talks, ranging from refinements in rodent housing to an enlightening presentation on where research animal use can be reduced through better scientific methodologies.

Two poster presenters won awards presented by Prof Nat Waran of the Jeanne Marchig International Centre for Animal Welfare, and Dr Lesley Penny, Director of Veterinary Scientific services. These represented what the judges felt were the best (of some really good posters) scientist and technician contribution to improving animal welfare through replacement, reduction and or refinement in their daily work.
The staff in Veterinary Scientific services who organised the symposium were pleased that it was so well attended and want to thank all those who put in posters for the 3Rs/welfare prizes. This represented a lot of work and there were some really interesting studies and proposals that will impact the welfare of animals at a local level and further afield. The mix of talks was excellent, informative and challenging in equal measures and it was great to see a mixture of animal unit staff and scientists in the audience including some very senior academics supporting the event. Roll on 2016!

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