Connecting European Neuroscience

FENS supports the EU Directive on the protection of animals used for scientific purposes

06 March, 2015 in FENS News

On 3 March 2015 the European Commission registered a Citizen Initiative called “Stop Vivisection”. The aim of this initiative is to obtain the immediate abolition of animal research in Europe.

FENS signed a joint statement together with other 122 research institutions, organisations and societies which is an appeal to oppose the initiative. FENS calls on the European Parliament and Commission to reaffirm their commitment to the Directive. Any roll back from this would both undermine animal welfare and compromise high-quality research using animals. 

“Knowledge generated by neuroscience research using experimental animals, besides providing fundamental knowledge about brain function has also led to important advances in the understanding and treatment of diseases that affect the nervous system”, states Monica Di Luca, FENS President.

In this respect, FENS stresses the importance of the 3Rs (refinement, reduction and replacement), which provide a comprehensive set of guiding principles for many areas of animal research, and encourage both improvements in animal welfare and the use of complementary and alternative procedures, where appropriate. FENS also supports the principle of harm benefit analysis for each prospective project involving animals in research, including purpose-bred non-human primates, and the adoption of standards of animal welfare to the highest level compatible with the scientific objectives of the project.

FENS promotes and advocates for the responsible use of animals for neuroscience and biomedical research. FENS is supportive of the research using animals where alternative methods are not available, where the potential benefits to health are compelling, and where acceptable ethical and welfare standards can be met. 

Read full FENS statement.

Read more about animals in research.

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