Saving two birds with one stone…

Chemicals used to protect crops require rigorous safety testing, usually in animals, to ensure that they are not harmful to humans or the environment. A recently published study has called into question some aspects of the approach to safety testing required in certain countries and regions suggesting an effective way to evaluate plant protection products whilst using fewer animals. Lead author, Sam Maynard, from Syngenta, tells the NC3Rs more about the findings.

Northern Bobwhite Quail

Northern Bobwhite Quail – most frequently used test species for avian acute toxicity testing (Image taken from Wikimedia Commons)

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Embedding the 3Rs in charity-funded research

How can charities go further to ensure that they are only using animals in research where absolutely necessary, and that the welfare of those animals and effective design of those studies is always of paramount importance? Dr Martin Turner, Senior Policy Advisor at the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC), explains how the AMRC are working together with the NC3Rs to make the 3Rs a priority in charity-funded research.

NC3R-RAT13

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Hosting an institutional workshop on the 3Rs

The University of Aberdeen recently organised and hosted a large workshop to promote the 3Rs, which included a flagship presentation by the NC3Rs. The workshop included speakers and attendees from Aberdeen and from across the bioscience sector. It was well attended and ultimately successful as an informative workshop that engaged delegates and met its overarching objective of widespread promotion of the 3Rs to academics and support staff alike. Iain Grant, Policy Adviser at the university, who was involved in bringing the event together, tells the NC3Rs about his experience of organising the day.

Dr CallumDr MacCallum presenting on the day

Defining the Objectives

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Working together to CRACK dementia

The UnTangle Challenge from CRACK IT brings together great minds from the charity sector, industry and academia to help unravel the mysteries surrounding how the tau protein is linked with the progression of Alzheimer’s disease. Dr Eric Karran, Director of Research at Alzheimer’s Research UK, tells the NC3Rs why the charity is excited to be involved with the Challenge.

Tau protein

Tau protein via Wikimedia Commons

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NC3Rs-funded research findings now available for all

Amidst the ever-changing landscape of scholarly communication, open access publishing has emerged as an attractive option for disseminating research findings further. In May 2014, the NC3Rs joined the Europe PubMed Central research funder’s consortium, meaning that NC3Rs-funded research papers will now be openly and easily available to all. Laura McGuinness, Communications Officer at the NC3Rs, takes a look at some of the many benefits of making 3Rs research free to access. 

pile of papers large

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