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"Reduction and Refinement": EPAA 2010 Annual Conference Report now available

News details
Mar 22, 2011
Organizer: EPAA

Outcome of the 6th EPAA Annual Conference (Brussels, November 2010)

The 6th Annual Conference of the European Partnership for Alternative Approaches to Animal Testing (EPAA) focused on the EPAA’s lead theme for 2010 - the clear potential of Reduction and Refinement strategies (intended to reduce the number of animals in a test, or refine the procedures to make them less painful or stressful to the animals under study).

The Conference welcomed the renewal of the partnership between the European Commission and seven industry sectors to advance 3Rs methods and strategies in the framework of regulatory testing.

Close to 200 persons registered for the Conference, from the European Parliament, national and international authorities, Commission services, EU agencies, industry, academia, animal welfare organisations and consultancy.

Download the pdf icon EPAA 2010 Annual Conference Report: "Reduction and Refinement. Combining Excellence in Science and Animal Welfare".

The European Commission, the industry partners and the Mirror Group all consider that each of the 3Rs has a specific and significant role to play. So while Replacement remains the ultimate goal, there is a need to develop actions specifically related to Reduction and Refinement, as these 2Rs can, in short timeframes, produce significant savings in the use of animals in testing, and reduce suffering.

They also expressed the conviction that the political, regulatory, economic and scientific incentives for the development and use of alternatives will increase in the coming years. Against this background, they see a definite role for the EPAA as a platform for voluntary cooperation between industry and regulators, with an increasing involvement of academia and NGOs.

In vitro/in silico methods are increasingly being used in integrated testing strategies in the decision-making process, be it for regulatory testing or for discovery research. Gradually, all results of testing and discovery research will be used to enhance the quality of regulatory packages and to make regulatory bodies more confident in taking their decisions on the basis of alternative approaches.