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Virtual center for replacement and complementary methods to animal testing

 

With the acceptance of the statutes by the senate in January 2009 and the election of the executive board in April 2009, the Virtual center for alternative and complementary methods to animal testing (VZET - Virtuelles Zentrum für Ersatz- und Ergänzungsmethoden zum Tierversuch) was created at the TiHo. The members of the board were Prof. Dr. Pablo Steinberg, as chairman, Prof. Dr. Manfred Kietzmann, as deputy and Prof. Dr. Gerhard Breves, Prof. Dr. Christiane Pfarrer, Prof. Dr. Silke Rautenschlein and Prof. Dr. Karl-Heinz Waldmann.

 

For some time now, various facilities at TiHo have been developing, optimizing and/or validating alternative and complementary methods to animal testing. According to the 3Rs concept, established by W.M.S. Russel and R.L. Burch in 1959, these are test methods which allow either a complete replacement of the use of animals or - if this is not possible - a reduction in the number of animals used or a reduction in the degree of stress of the animals (refinement).

 

The foundation of the Virtual center for alternative and complementary methods to animal testing is intended to facilitate bundling of the activities of the various institutes in the above-mentioned field of research and teaching by means of interdisciplinary cooperation.

The main goals of the research are

  • to the development and validation of new alternative and complementary methods to animal testing,
  • the identification of new fields of work in the field of alternative and complementary methods to animal testing and
  • the formation of esearch networks for the intensive research of new fields of work,
  • the provision of alternative and complementary methods to animal testing for working groups inside and outside the TiHo,
  • the intensification of interdisciplinary research in the field of the development of alternative and complementary methods to animal experiments, as well as
  • the provision of biostatistical expertise in the planning of animal experiments in order to reduce the number of animals to be used.

The objectives within the framework of teaching are

 

  • in particular the anchoring of the 3R concept in all areas of veterinary training,
  • the organization and implementation of events (seminars, lecture series, scientific conferences) for students to promote interest in the development of alternative and complementary methods to animal testing,
  • mediation of the contact of interested students to working groups that develop alternative and complementary methods to animal testing, and
  • contributions to postgraduate education.   

 

The main tasks of the Virtual center also include public relations for the development and validation of alternative and complementary methods to animal testing as well as the active dissemination of the use of these methods in research and teaching.

 

Chairman of the VZET
Prof. Dr. med. vet. Gerhard Breves
Tel.:+49 511 856-7271
Fax.:+49 511 856-7687
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