New scientific impulses towards 3R Alternatives: Methods to replace, reduce and refine animal use 

The 3Rs principle (Refinement, Reduction & Replacement) is a central tenant for high quality science that incorporates innovative, non-animal, methodologies wherever possible. It is explicit in EU and international legislation, and the application of 3Rs is a desirable framework for meaningful biomedical insights. In this context there is a growing focus, in both academic and industrial sectors, on the development of alternative approaches which refine, reduce or avoid the use of animals. A driving force is the urgent need for better models that reflect human biology and physiology with greater accuracy.

The establishment of IC-3Rs

Over the last 25 years, the team of In Vitro Toxicology and Dermato-cosmetology (IVTD), under the direction of Prof. Vera Rogiers at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB), has spearheaded the development of alternative methods that reflect the 3Rs principle for toxicology and safety applications. With the formation of the Innovation Centre-3Rs (IC-3Rs) we aim to increase the visibility of alternative methods by enhancing communication, building the local network and supporting the development of in vitro methodologies, throughout the Belgian region and Europe.

Inaugural symposium: 25th September 2017

To kick-off IC-3Rs, an inaugural symposium will be held, with a focus on the alternative methods developed at the VUB, Jette campus. Cross disciplinary talks, from key VUB experts, will highlight how cutting edge research can work hand-in-hand with alternative strategies – delivering high quality and relevant science in line with a humane approach.

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