FRAME News Fund for the Replacement of Animals in Medical Experiments
Editor: Anne Jeffery
No. 66 April 2011
FRAME BATTLES ON A number of FRAME’s keenest commercial sponsors have, unfortunately, merged or ceased to trade in the last few years and therefore their support has been lost. Some generous legacies during the financial year to 31 March 2011 have ensured that FRAME can continue its work for a while longer, but the charity cannot rely on that happening again this year, so it is important to take steps to increase income from other donors.
In common with many other charities and businesses, FRAME is facing tougher times as financial pressures grow. The cost of maintaining FRAME, its services and its research, is increasing as prices rise. At the same time, FRAME’s supporters are facing their own challenges and are finding it more difficult to maintain the level of donations they have previously made.
The Trustees are looking for ways to save money in all of FRAME’s activities, for example, by finding more costeffective production and distribution systems for its scientific journal ATLA (Alternatives to Laboratory Animals), and trying to identify new sources of income as well as securing existing ones. FRAME receives no Government grants and is entirely dependent on gifts and corporate sponsorship. Meanwhile, FRAME hopes to maintain its momentum in searching for alternatives to the use of animals in medical and scientific research and in promoting the Three Rs in chemicals and product testing and in education.
As can be seen within these pages, FRAME is continuing to meet its existing aims, but it is not clear how much longer that can be maintained.
INSIDE... A letter to the Prime Minister
APPFG to be revived
EU cosmetics testing FRAME viewpoint
FRAME poster successes
8th World Congress in Canada
News from the FAL
FRAME annual lecture
Vivienne Hunter (1955–2010)
FRAME training school
ATLA wins award
New EU directive: FRAME viewpoint
How you can help FRAME
FRAME BACKS CAMPAIGN AGAINST WILD-CAUGHT PRIMATES
Chairman of the FRAME Trustees Prof. Michael Balls was one of the signatories to an open letter, published in The Times and The Guardian, calling on the UK Government to dissociate itself from the trade in wild-caught primates for research. A copy was also delivered to 10 Downing Street. As part of the campaign more than 100 MPs signed an Early Day Motion (EDM 957) calling on the Government to end the UK’s involvement in the wild-caught primate trade. The text of the letter, and the signatories, can be seen on the right. The letter is part of the BUAV’s Stop the Baby Trade Campaign and FRAME was present at a parliamentary reception at the House of Commons, sponsored by Green Party MP Caroline Lucas, designed to promote it. The event included the first screening of a documentary video, which included undercover footage of the conditions in some breeding centres and methods of capturing animals from the wild. Some of the images were distressing but the film has been put together well and is not so graphic that it repulses the viewer. FRAME Scientific Officer Michelle Hudson said: “The event was very relevant to FRAME’s and my own work on primates. It highlighted that despite strict rules on the use of wild caught animals in the UK there is still a lot of work to do to ensure that animals from the wild are not used to replenish breeding stocks and that living conditions are vastly improved. This will be particularly important when the new Directive is transposed and steps toward using only F2 generation animals are set in motion.”
AN OPEN LETTER TO THE PRIME MINISTER Dear Mr Cameron We, the undersigned, believe that the trade in wild-caught nonhuman primates for research inflicts immense suffering. Despite a ban in the UK on the import of wild-caught primates since 1997, there is not a similar ban on their offspring who are imported every year from Mauritius for British laboratories. The UK is, therefore, perpetuating a trade that centres on the cruel trapping of wild animals. We call on the Government to completely disassociate itself from this cruelty and to introduce a ban on the importation of the offspring of wild-caught primates as well as those from any facility which captures primates from the wild. Yours sincerely, Richard Adams, author, Graham Allen MP, Prof. Michael Balls, Chairman of the FRAME Trustees, Prof. Simon Bearder, Oxford Brookes University, Peter Black AM, Rt Hon David Blunkett MP, Annette Brooke MP, Mark Carwardine, zoologist, TV presenter, conservationist and wildlife photographer, Prof. Stephen R L Clark, University of Liverpool, Vernon Coaker MP, Prof. Roger Crisp, University of Oxford; Boston University, Alex Cunningham MP, Nic Dakin MP, Chris Davies MEP, Rt Hon Nigel Dodds OBE MP, Rt Hon Jeffrey Donaldson MP, Mark Durkan MP, Jillian Evans MEP, Paul Flynn MP, David Ford MLA, Alliance Party Leader Don Foster MP, Prof. Robert Garner, University of Leicester, Andrew George MP, Ricky Gervais, comedian and actor, Sheila Gilmore MP, Zac Goldsmith MP, Jane Goodall PhD DBE, Founder of the Jane Goodall Institute, Mike Hancock CBE MP, Robin Harper MSP, Prof. Stephen Harris, University of Bristol, Patrick Harvie MSP, Dai Havard MP, John Hemming MP, Kelvin Hopkins MP, Cathy Jamieson MP, Bethan Jenkins AM, Darren Johnson AM, Jenny Jones AM, Rt Hon Charles Kennedy MP, Simon King OBE, wildlife presenter, photographer and conservationist, Jean Lambert MEP, Twiggy Lawson, actress and supermodel, Chris Leslie MP, Revd Prof. Andrew Linzey, Director of the Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics, Naomi Long MP, Caroline Lucas MP, Green Party Leader, Michael Mansfield QC, Barrister and Professor of Law, Meg Matthews, celebrity designer, Dr Brian May CBE, musician and Founder of Save Me, Kerry McCarthy MP, Robert McCracken QC, John McDonnell MP, Prof. William McGrew, University of Cambridge, Gerry McHugh MLA, Virginia McKenna OBE, actress, author and Founder of the Born Free Foundation, Dr Anna Nekaris, Reader in Primate Conservation, Elected member of IUCN Primate Specialist Group, Bill Oddie, wildlife presenter and expert, Jonathon Porritt CBE, writer & broadcaster, Yasmin Qureshi MP, Prof. Janet Radcliffe Richards, University of Oxford, Ian Redmond OBE, field biologist and conservationist, Prof.Vernon Reynolds, University of Oxford, Linda Riordan MP, Prof. Bernard E Rollin, Colorado State University, Prof. Mark Rowlands, University of Miami, writer, Adrian Sanders MP, Jenny Seagrove, actress, Henry Smith MP, David Spratt, Chartered Scientist, Chartered Biologist, zoologist, Michaela Strachan, wildlife presenter and conservationist, Peter Tatchell, human rights campaigner, Keith Taylor MEP, Toyah Willcox, actress and singer, Glenis Willmott MEP, Labour’s Leader in Europe, Prof. Jonathan Wolff, University College London, Leanne Wood AM, Simon Wright MP, Benjamin Zephaniah, writer and poet
Photo courtesy of Tony Marson
FRAME is supporting a campaign by the BUAV (British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection) calling for the UK Government to end any links with the trade in wild-caught primates for use in laboratories.
APPFG TO BE REVIVED FRAME met with a group of MPs and Parliamentary officials to discuss relaunching the FRAME advisory group, which was first established in 1981. The group was extremely influential during the build up and passage through Parliament of the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986. The All Party Parliamentary FRAME Group (APPFG) is a group for members of both Houses at Westminster. It was formed to support FRAME’s work and to encourage the Government to promote the use of non-animal procedures in the UK and elsewhere.
The last APPFG lapsed at the time of the General Election, when many of its long-standing members retired from the House of Commons. The plan is to relaunch it, so that the Three Rs will have a strong voice in future debates on policies that determine the use of animals in research and testing. During the election campaign, FRAME contacted all the Prospective Parliamentary Candidates to ask for their support if they were elected. As a result, the charity made contact with a number of new MPs who believe in the Three Rs and are confident that they can create an effective group.
FRAME Viewpoint: Draft Report on Alternative (Non-animal) Methods for Cosmetics Testing: Current Status and Future Prospects — 2010 In July 2010, the European Commission asked for public comments on the Draft Report on Alternative (Non-animal) Methods for Cosmetics Testing: Current Status and Future Prospects — 2010, in order “to ensure that each chapter correctly reflects the current state of the art and the prospects”. This draft report was prepared by working groups of experts nominated by the various stakeholders and chaired by the Commission’s Joint Research Centre (JRC). The consultation is related to a requirement that the Commission must inform the European Parliament and the European Council “in case alternative methods will not have been developed and validated by 2013 for the remaining endpoints that are exempted from the
Cosmetic Directive’s (Directive 76/768/EEC) marketing ban until 2013”. The Cosmetics Directive places restrictions on the use of animals to test the safety of cosmetics and their ingredients. Since March 2009 cosmetics containing ingredients tested using animals can not be marketed in Europe. This ban was extended until March 2013 for specific safety issues that still rely on animal tests; repeated dose toxicity (including skin sensitisation and carcinogenicity), reproductive toxicity and toxicokinetics. FRAME believes the five draft chapters related to these issues do not provide a credible basis for the Commission’s report to the European Parliament and the European Council on the cosmetic ingredient safety issues for which the 7th
There are a number of new rules proposed by the EU that will affect research and the welfare of animals in laboratories throughout Europe. They include the new Directive on the Protection of Animals Used for Scientific Purposes and the approach of a new deadline for a ban on cosmetic ingredient testing in animals under the Cosmetics Directive. (See below)
Amendment to the Cosmetic Directive’s ban on animal testing was postponed until 2013. FRAME has made a number of recommendations to the Commission and details can be found in: M Balls and R Clothier. Comment: A FRAME Response to the European Commission Consultation on the Draft Report on Alternative (Nonanimal) Methods for Cosmetics Testing: Current Status and Future Prospects — 2010 ATLA 38, No. 5. The report is available to download free from the FRAME website. http://www. frame.org.uk/atla_issue.php?iss_id=115 The BUAV has also produced a detailed report in response to the European Commission’s 2010 consultation on its own draft report on the availability of alternative methods for cosmetics testing. The 16-page BUAV report, entitled Meeting the Deadline of the 2013 EU Marketing Ban — A Scientific Review of Non-Animal Tests for Cosmetics, is available at: http://www.buav.org/_lib/userfiles/files/ BUAV_ScienceReport-SCREEN.pdf
FRAME WINS EPAA POSTER AWARD A FRAME scientific poster, Training for Reduction, has received an award from the European Partnership for Alternative Approaches to Animal Testing (EPAA). The poster, by FRAME Scientific Officer Michelle Hudson, and Dr Derek Fry, former Chief Inspector at the Home Office, was displayed at the EPAA annual conference Reduction and Refinement: Combining Excellence in Science and Animal Welfare, in Brussels. The award is given for a poster presented by universities or NGOs. Posters in the latest competition had to be related to the theme of Reduction and Refinement. The award offers financial support equivalent to €1500 to be used for reimbursement of expenses related to Three Rs activities, such as support for research, dissemination activities or participation of the authors in relevant conferences or workshops. FRAME’s poster described the
extremely successful FRAME Reduction Steering Committee (FRSC) Training Schools in Experimental Design and Statistics. There is a recognised need for improved training in good experimental design, to reduce and refine the numbers of animals used in biomedical experiments, and the poster explained how FRAME’s training schools help to redress that. As well as detailing how FRSC has successfully conducted training over the past three years, it also emphasised the need for additional support so the schools can continue to be accessible to scientists throughout Europe.
Training for Reduction Fry D.1 and Hudson M.2 2
1 c/o FRAME (Fund for the Replacement of Animals in Medical Experiments) Experiments) FRAME, Russell & Burch House, 9696-98 North Sherwood Street, Nottingham, NG1 4EE, UK
Good Good experimental experimental design design reduces reduces animal animal use use by optimising animal usage and decreasing wastage from poorly planned or badlybadly-sized experiments. For example, factorial experiments, using treatment groups with mixed sex, age or strain, can gain two or more times the information from the same number of animals as those experiments using single comparisons.
Publications Publications showing showing faults faults in in design design and and inefficient inefficient use use of of animals animals are are common common For example, a survey of 271 papers in a spread of good quality biomedical journals found widespread deficiencies, including unclear objectives in some papers, and that “only 62% (75/121) of all the experiments assessed that were amenable to a factorial design (and analysis) reported using one.” one.” The authors commented “it seems that a large number of the studies assessed did not make the most efficient use of the available resources (including the animals), by using the most appropriate experimental design.” design.” [Reference: Kilkenny C et al. (2001) PLoS one 4(11) e7824]
And And aa need need for for training training has has been been recognised recognised A meeting of researchers and statisticians discussing design and analysis of animal experiments put high in the list of key barriers to fruitful dialogue: ¾ Researchers’ Researchers’ lack of understanding of the basic principles of statistics and experimental design ¾ Lack of awareness among researchers of how proper design and statistical analysis can benefit science The meeting recommended improved training of researchers in experimental design and statistical analysis techniques. [Reference: Vaughan S (2004) ATLA 32(Suppl.2) 2929-30]
Young researchers from themselves to have had experimental design.
across not a
Europe considered lot of training in
[Reference: Howard B et al . (2009) ATLA 37(1) 3333-42]
FRAME earchers, to res FRAME has has set set up up Experimental Experimental Design Design Training Training Schools Schools for for EU EU researchers, researchers, to help help meet meet the the training training need need This course has reinforced my existing method, whilst reminding me of many I had forgotten.
Great help to improve my teaching to research students and my own research.
They … feedback They have have had had excellent excellent feedback… feedback… Comments from the three training schools already held in association with the Universities of Manchester and Nottingham.
The course was useful for initiating collaborations with colleagues from different areas. It was interesting to spend time with people from different areas of scientific research.
The content of the course was extremely relevant and useful to me and I will definitely recommend the course to others.
The computer session was most useful and interesting, it puts the rest of the course into a practical context.
I found the course helpful and it made me think about lots of different factors.
Excellent course, I learned a lot.
Group exercises were good for interacting with other participants on the course.
...improved participants ...improved participants’ participants’’ understanding understanding For all topics, test scores at the end of the courses were higher higher or much higher than at the beginning.
...and ...and had had an an impact impact on on research research In a survey of past participants: ¾ 50% felt the course had improved their
research by a large amount ¾a further 40% indicated a medium improvement [Reference: Howard B et al. (2009) ATLA 37(1) 3333-42]
Features Features of of the the Training Training Schools Schools
EPAA The European Partnership for Alternative Approaches to Animal Testing is an unprecedented voluntary collaboration between the European Commission, European trade associations, and companies from seven industry sectors.
STRATEGIC PLANNING POSTER IN TRANSLATION A highly successful FRAME poster aimed at helping researchers to design experiments in a way that will minimise the number of animals used, is to be translated into other languages. The original poster, Strategic Planning Chart for Reducing Animal Use in Biomedical Science, was drawn up by the FRAME Reduction Steering Committee two years ago. It has proved so popular with UK universities and research establishments that the committee has had it translated into French and Spanish. If the two new versions prove successful, there are plans to extend the series further with translations into other European languages, including German and Portuguese. The English poster can be downloaded from the FRAME website, or printed copies are available by emailing email@example.com
The partners are committed to pooling knowledge and resources to accelerate the development, validation and acceptance of alternative approaches to further the reduction, refinement and replacement (Three Rs) of animal use in regulatory testing.
¾ Bring together a unique combination of tutors of international standing, with many years of experience in teaching and advising on experimental design or biostatistics ¾ Three and a half days residential ¾ Progress from basic assumptions to complex designs ¾ Increase awareness of the factors that need to be considered when designing an experiment and the associated animal welfare and scientific consequences ¾ Include many workshop sessions to improve confidence and skills ¾ Discuss participants’ own design problems ¾ Provide a forum for exchanging ideas and meeting other researchers ¾ Involve only the cost of accommodation and facilities - tutors give their time and expertise for free ¾ Attract delegates from across Europe
To ing is fund To continue continue this this successful successful training training for for reduction, reduction, further further funding funding is needed needed The Training Schools provide researchers from across Europe with an understanding of basic design concepts that they do not seem to be gaining from other sources, and an ability to use more efficient designs for their experiments. They stimulate engagement with the Three Rs and useful useful discussion between animal users in industry and academia on both refinement and reduction. There is demand for this training, but funding is needed to keep costs within the reach of many who would like to attend and for any Schools to be held outside the UK. Although tutor time and expertise are free, costs of accommodation, accommodation, facilities, teaching material and tutor travel have to be be met. ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS:Training Schools were developed with support from COST Action TO SUPPORT OR ATTEND A TRAINING SCHOOL EMAIL MICHELLE: B24 and the last two Schools were sponsored by Laboratory Animals Ltd. firstname.lastname@example.org ©FRAME 2010
Copies of the poster can be downloaded from the FRAME website. www.frame.org.uk
FRAME’S NEW ON-LINE BOOKSHOP If you are a keen reader and you would like to help FRAME the next time you buy a book, why not log on to our great new online shop? You can choose from thousands of titles, both fiction and non-fiction, and they are all priced at less than they would cost on the High Street. A proportion of every sale will be donated to FRAME to help us keep up our vital work, searching for alternatives to the use of animals in medical and scientific experiments and testing.
8TH WORLD CONGRESS
MONTRÉAL, CANADA The 8th World Congress on Alternatives and Animal Use in the Life Sciences is being hosted this year by the Canadian Council on Animal Care (CCAC). The subtitle for the 2011 conference is “The Three Rs – Together it’s Possible”. The five-day event is being staged in Montréal on August 21–25.
This year’s planned scientific programme is diverse, spanning from toxicity testing to animal welfare policy to issues unique to farm animal and wildlife research, and is divided into five themes. Theme I: Safety and Efficacy Testing of Chemicals, Pharmaceuticals and Biologicals Theme II: Policy/Law on Animal Use, Public Engagement and Ethical Review Theme III: Incorporation of the Three Rs in Education and Training Theme IV: Animal Welfare for Refinement and High Quality Science Theme V: Replacement and Reduction in Basic Research The Congress will also feature satellite meetings, multimedia demonstrations, point-counterpoint debates, and reporting sessions on the latest developments in the field.
The Montréal skyline
Michelle said: “It is a wonderful opportunity to promote the kind of work that takes place at the training schools, which have already proved so successful. The conference venue
As usual, FRAME will be involved in the event throughout the five days. FRAME Scientific Officer, Michelle Hudson, will co-chair a scientific session on Systematic Reviews of Animal Experiments as part of Theme V. Within the field of animal experimentation it is not yet common practice to perform systematic reviews (SR). Such reviews were introduced to the clinical setting decades ago, and have gained full acceptance as necessary steps for evidence-based medicine. In order to reach evidence-based laboratory animal science, SR of animal studies need to be performed. This session will focus on why systematic reviews of animal experiments are urgently needed, how they need to be done, and the hurdles that need to be overcome to ensure that the Three Rs are being implemented in research studies.
“Until now we have only had the chance to run them in the UK and Europe, but this is the perfect way to spread the message internationally.” FRAME will also be submitting posters for the scientific exhibition which runs alongside the Congress. It is hoped that the award winning training schools poster (see page 2) will be among those chosen by the selection committee. Director of the FRAME Alternatives Laboratory (FAL) Dr Andy Bennett will also be co-chairing a session, and FAL researchers will be taking scientific posters, including one on the use of microarrays in toxicity testing. Olympic Park/ HochelagaMasionneuve
Photo credit © Régie des installations olympiques
The World Congresses on Alternatives and Animal Use in the Life Sciences are the longest running series of international scientific conferences dedicated to the replacement, reduction, and refinement of animal use in research and safety testing.
Michelle will also be taking part in a satellite meeting that will take the form of a training session in experimental design. The session will focus on the kind of work that is carried out at the FRAME Reduction Steering Committee training schools. It is mainly aimed at animal care committee members, and is designed to promote the importance of experimental design in minimising the number of animals required for laboratory procedures.
NEW LIVER MODEL DEVELOPED AT THE FRAME ALTERNATIVES LAB Researchers at the FRAME Alternatives Laboratory (FAL) are working on project to investigate the side effects of a type of chemotherapy used in the treatment of colorectal cancer. The cancer often spreads to the liver and patients have to undergo surgery to remove part of the organ. The treatment, using oxaliplatin, sometimes causes fat deposition in the liver (steatosis), reducing its ability to recover from the surgery.
The FAL is trying to increase knowledge of how the treatment causes the steatosis by using human cell cultures to mimic different parts of the liver. Using the Quasi-vivo® system, the lab can grow cultures of different types of liver cell together, so that they closely mimic a human liver. The model also includes types of cell that are involved in inflammatory and immunological elements of liver disease. Lab director Dr Andy Bennett explained: “A dynamic environment that permits the formation of three-dimensional cell colonies will provide a more accurate representation of a human liver than cells that have been grown twodimensionally as a monolayer.” The work will help to identify potential therapies that would prevent the side effects of the chemotherapy and reduce negative patient outcomes. The FAL is working closely with medics and surgeons at the Queen’s Medical Centre, University of Nottingham, UK,
including Mr Dilip Lobo, Mr John Hammond, and Dr Guruprasad Aithal. Dr Bennett said: “Human cells are essential to this project. We rely on the generous donations of tissue by patients undergoing cancer treatment and liver surgery, and on the participation of the clinical team, to seek patient consent prior to the surgery and to provide the tissue in a medium that is suitable for research. “The tissue we receive is surplus to clinical requirements, and would otherwise be disposed of as biological waste. This project is particularly apposite, as the patients who donate their tissue will themselves often have undergone a course of oxaliplatin therapy and the data we generate will be used to try and improve their clinical outcome.” The new liver model does not directly replace any existing animal models. Although there are liver disease models using genetically modified mice they are
The FRAME Alternatives Laboratory (FAL) The FRAME Alternatives Laboratory (FAL) was founded in 1983 at the University of Nottingham Medical School by Professor Michael Balls, Dr Richard Clothier and Dr Jeffrey Fry. Under the leadership of Dr Andy Bennett, the FAL is continuing to discover and develop real alternatives to the use of animals in research and testing.
not suitable for investigating the effects of oxaliplatin because it does not affect mouse liver. Dr Bennett added: “The obvious advantage is that we will be studying a human disease in human cells. If our data are positive, we might be in a position to improve patients’ lives without having to perform further experiments to confirm that the results obtained are applicable to humans (which would be the case, if the research was animal-based).“
The model also mimics the way in which the chemotherapy is given to patients. They usually receive two cycles over a twoweek period and the new liver model enables cells to survive for a month, so it more closely replicates the way that the human liver is affected. “By mimicking, in vitro, as much as possible, the conditions to which the patients are exposed during their treatment, we have a good chance of identifying the events involved in causing the side-effects.”
The next stage Once steatosis is achieved in the cell cultures, the lab will try to block/reverse the condition by using well-tolerated FDA-approved therapies (such as fish oil). Samples will be examined for evidence of steatosis and results will be quantified by using a cell staining technique, which allows the degree of fat accumulation to be measured. Analysis of gene expression will be used to determine the effects of oxaliplatin upon metabolic gene function.
FRAME ANNUAL LECTURE More people die every year from lung disease than heart disease and it is estimated that by 2020 the number one killer in Britain will be chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Respiratory illness costs the UK £6.6 billion each year.
advantages over rodent preparations. As well as requiring no animals, they are from an unlimited source, are noninvasive, relatively inexpensive and provide actual human data, rather than needing animal to human extrapolation.
Researchers at the University of Cardiff are looking into new non-animal methods to test air pollutants. Leading the research is Dr Kelly BéruBé, who gave the twelfth FRAME Annual Lecture entitled: Alternatives for Lung Research: Stuck Between a Rat and a Hard Place. Dr BéruBé explained the workings of the human respiratory system and some of the diseases that can affect it, for example, asthma and emphysema, fibrosis (an inability to expand the lungs), and circulation problems.
Air pollution One of the main causes of lung disease is air pollution and half the world’s population lives in areas with poor air quality. Traffic, industrial development and other causes, such as smoking, produce a number of potentially toxic gases and generate particulate matter, which has a direct effect on health and ultimately increases death rates. Particles of different sizes affect different areas of the respiratory system, with finer materials able to penetrate further into the body. Traditionally, toxicology testing for damage caused by particulate matter has been carried out on rats by exposing them to known pollutants and then killing them and sampling different parts of the respiratory system to identify biomarkers that demonstrate tissue damage. These results are then extrapolated to humans.
Inexact Such animal tests are inexact for several reasons: rodent lung anatomy and physiology are very different from those of humans; rats breathe only through their noses, not through their mouths; and the test doses applied are much higher than those that could realistically be experienced by humans.
Dr BéruBé demonstrates the health effects of increased particulate matter in air.
Human micro-lung Dr BéruBé’s team are working on a human micro-lung that can be generated from cells harvested from donated human bronchial epithelium. The cells are from medical waste, such as autopsy or biopsy samples that would otherwise be thrown away. The research team can use them to create differentiated and organised cells that together closely resemble human lung tissues.
There are other models that use human cells, cultured on plastic or on membranes, but the advantage of the micro-lung is that it is in three dimensions, with differentiated cells, and behaves like real lung tissue. The micro-lung can also be used to investigate the mechanisms by which pollution causes lung damage, which in turn can help to find new treatments.
The micro-lungs can be used to test airborne pollutants and have several
The lecture was held at the Kennel Club, London.
The illustrations for the talk included a series of 3-D photographs of some of the more common pollutants and the kind of cellular damage they can cause. The room lights were dimmed and the audience all donned red and green glasses to see them. It is the first time such a technique has been included in a FRAME Annual Lecture and everyone agreed it was a great innovation.
Vivienne Hunter (1955–2010) Viv came to work at FRAME in April, 1986, as Publications Secretary. She proved to be a brilliant technical sub-editor and an excellent proofreader, and she played a crucial role in ensuring that FRAME’s journal, ATLA (Alternatives to Laboratory Animals), maintained its very high production standards, and that each issue was published on time. She was the journal’s Editorial Assistant from 1987 to 1999, Assistant Editor from 2000 to 2005, and Production Editor from 2000 to 2006. She was also Editor for 21 issues of FRAME News.
Chairman of the FRAME Trustees Prof Michael Balls has issued a tribute to former staff member Vivienne Hunter, who has died.
The period between 1987 and 1994 was marked by a particularly memorable working relationship between Viv, Gilly Griffin (as Managing Editor), Tony Marson (our typesetter), and me (as Editor), during which many technical changes were made, resulting in the journal as it is today. When Gilly emigrated to Canada in 1994, we had a series of young
FRAME is to hold another of its extremely successful training schools in experimental design and statistical analysis. The schools are attended by biomedical postgraduates and laboratory staff and aim to provide them with an understanding of the factors that need to be taken into consideration when experiments are planned.
Throughout her time at FRAME, Viv’s health steadily deteriorated, as a result of progressively severe arthritis. She was given all the available drugs, and had a very demanding series of spinal operations, bone grafts and vertebral fusions, often accompanied by long-term infections. Despite the fact that she suffered long periods of constant pain, I never heard Viv complain, and she always had a beautiful smile. However, by 2005, she had become too ill to come to work, and had to embark on yet another series of intricate operations. She died on 12 November 2010, as a result of complications arising from her latest spinal surgery. Viv and I shared the hope that she would one day be well enough to work again for FRAME, in one capacity or another. In a message to me dated 8 January 2007, she said “Don’t forget me!” — I never did, and I never will.
FRAME Training School in Experimental Design When scientists carry out experiments it is vitally important that they are well designed, otherwise they may waste resources or give the wrong answers. This is especially serious if animals are used. These training schools help scientists to reduce the number of animals they use in their research and maximise the information they gain in the process. Through a series of lectures and workshops, delegates learn basic design techniques, statistical methods that ensure data are analysed correctly, practical skills to refine experimental procedures and the legal and ethical
Assistant Editors, who were rigorously trained by Viv and later went on to higher things. Subsequently, she also worked effectively with a series of moreexperienced Production Editors.
considerations involved in animal research. The latest school will be held in June at the University of Edinburgh. It is taking place with generous sponsorship by the European Partnership for Alternative Approaches to Animal Testing (EPAA) and Laboratory Animals Ltd. Previous schools have been held throughout the UK and it is hoped that future sessions will be held in Mainland Europe. Past delegates have included tutors who are responsible for training young scientists at their universities or institutions. They report that the sessions are useful for both them and their students. The schools are arranged through the FRAME Reduction Steering Committee.
ATLA WINS AMERICAN
FRAME’s scientific journal, ATLA (Alternatives to Laboratory Animals), has been presented with a $5000 award by an American alternatives organisation, in recognition of its influence in promoting the orderly replacement of animal experimentation. The William and Eleanor Cave Award has previously always been given to American individuals, but the awarding body, the Alternatives Research & Development Foundation (ARDF), wanted to stress ATLA’s importance in the U.S.
Laboratory Animal Welfare Guide
A WA R D
The Joint Working Group on Refinement (JWGR), an association between the British Veterinary Association Animal Welfare Foundation (BVAAWF), FRAME, the RSPCA and the Universities Federation for Animal Welfare (UFAW), has published its latest working party report. It is a guide to defining and implementing protocols for the welfare assessment of laboratory animals, which offers practical guidance on setting up and operating protocols that will ensure effective observations, identify appropriate signs of distress, allow understanding of what is normal for the animal concerned, record all findings appropriately, and establish consistency among observers.
ARDF President Sue Leary said: “ARDF has decided to do something a little unusual this year and present the award to a journal. In the past it has been awarded to people, especially scientists and science or medical educators who have made significant contributions to the field of alternatives. The award points to ATLA’s ‘lifetime achievements’ in helping to create, nurture and sustain an international community of people interested in alternatives. Its impact was felt in the U.S. at a time when we were still finding our way.”
It sets out general principles and gives examples, as well as making recommendations designed for use by anyone involved in assessing animal welfare, such as technicians and care staff, veterinarians and scientists. The report is: A guide to defining and implementing protocols for the welfare assessment of laboratory animals: eleventh report of the BVAAWF/FRAME/RSPCA/ UFAW Joint Working Group on Refinement. P Hawkins, D B Morton, O Burman, N Dennison, P Honess, M Jennings, S Lane, V Middleton, J V Roughan, S Wells and K Westwood. Laboratory Animals Vol. 45 No 1.
Professor Michael Balls, Chairman of the FRAME Trustees and Editor of ATLA, received the award at a reception during the 2010 In Vitro Alternatives Forum, organised in Alexandria, Virginia, by the Institute for In Vitro Sciences. He said: “ATLA has grown from its original format of a twice-yearly scientific abstracts summary into a respected bi-monthly international publication. It has readers in more than 50 countries and, as a result, influences research and policy throughout the world. It is gratifying that the contributions over nearly 40 years of many gifted editors, production staff, editorial board members and authors have been recognised by such an eminent organisation as the ARDF.”
ATLA ABSTRACTS: NOW AVAILABLE
ON L INE F R EE Did you know you can access abstracts of articles in our scientific journal ATLA (Alternatives to Laboratory Animals) online, free of charge? You will also find free access to the regular News and Views column and our Editorials. Log on to www.frame.org.uk and follow the links on the left-hand side. You will need to register with us to gain access to the abstracts but you will not be charged.
It has long been FRAME policy to subsidise ATLA distribution to interested parties in countries where the concept of replacement of animals in medical and scientific experiments is new or under-developed. The $5000 prize will help FRAME to continue that policy, at least for the time being. The award is named after William and Eleanor Cave, who were devoted officers of The American Anti-Vivisection Society for decades. They recognised the opportunities in developing new technologies and alternative methods to address the problems of animal experimentation. They dedicated resources to fund research, eventually resulting in the establishment of the ARDF.
The William and Eleanor Cave Award is presented to recognise achievements in developing alternatives to the traditional use of animals in testing, research or education. Over the years, more than $1.5 million have been distributed in grants to investigators throughout the United States to develop alternative methods. In addition, ARDF has sponsored, planned and participated in scientific meetings and worked to implement progressive policies.
THE NEW EU DIRECTIVE:
In the past there have been vast differences in the levels of protection afforded to laboratory animals within Europe, with potential effects on trade in products and substances that are developed using animal experiments, as well as issues with differing standards of animal welfare and scientific quality. The new Directive purports to be firmly based on the principle of the Three Rs,
Photo courtesy of Nurhasanah Mazalan © www.flickr.com/photos/nurilahi
A new EU Directive on the protection of animals used for scientific and other experimental purposes, was adopted on 22 September 2010 in a bid to remove disparities in laws, regulations and administrative provisions among the Member States.
to replace, reduce and refine the use of animals for scientific purposes. However, FRAME does not believe that it goes far enough, and has made several recommendations for consideration for adoption when the UK Government transposes the Directive into national legislation. The Directive
BIOBANK DATA TO BE MADE AVAILABLE Scientists are to be given access to data and samples collected in the national Biobank project within a year. More than half a million people aged 40 to 69 have taken part in the survey over the last three years, providing the UK’s largest ever health data bank. The information it holds will be invaluable to researchers in the future. By giving direct access to human data it will pave the way for new methods that do not require the use of laboratory animals. A committee is being set up to ensure fair access by scientists and to approve
health research projects. Groups working on similar projects will be encouraged to work together. Biobank’s Chief Scientist Dr Tim Sprosen said: “In 10 or 20 years time the things that we will be able to analyse in the samples may well be things that scientists have not yet thought about. The next generation, who might still be in primary school today, will actually use new tests and new methodologies to be able to unlock new secrets in terms of how to prevent diseases.” FRAME staff were among the 34,000 volunteers who attended the Nottingham Biobank clinic to provide blood, urine and saliva samples, and to answer a detailed questionnaire about their health and habits.
will take full effect from 1 January 2013. Details of the FRAME recommendations can be found on the website but, in brief, they include: limiting the use of non-human primates to basic research for the good of the species; not introducing proposed safeguard clauses that would allow the use of great apes; strictly controlling re-use of laboratory animals after moderate procedures and banning reuse after severe procedures altogether; securing the continuation and expansion of the current Ethical Review Process; ensuring that new simpler administrative procedures do not discourage innovation in the Three Rs; carrying out a Home Office review to ensure staffing levels are high enough to complete retrospective assessments effectively; introducing a requirement that Project Licence Abstracts are fully transparent and informative; establishing a new national committee that is representive of interests across the full spectrum, including animal welfare and alternatives research, as well as lay members.
FEMINISM FRAME supplied information for a conference at The Institute of Germanic and Romance Studies, School of Advanced Study at the University of London called (Re)Branding Feminism. Among the topics under discussion was the use of injectable anti-wrinkle treatments. FRAME has campaigned for many years to have restrictions placed on the use of botulinum toxin for cosmetic reasons because of the cruelty involved in testing it. FRAME believes batches of the toxin should be tested according to the purpose for which they will be used so that those intended for cosmetic use cannot be tested on animals. All trivial, non-medical uses of botulinum toxin should be stopped until batches can be tested by humane methods.
FRAME WORLDWIDE Education CD in demand
FRAME supports South African Three Rs campaigns FRAME has helped two South African organisations in their campaigns to promote the Three Rs.
An education CD created by FRAME last year is being used in Brazil thanks to a supporter. Vanessa Carli Bones Silla first made contact with FRAME at the World Congress in Rome in 2009. Since then she has moved to Brazil where she is studying for a PhD in alternatives to animal use in laboratories. She requested the CD after reading about it in the electronic version of FRAME News last October. She is a post-graduate researcher at the Animal Welfare Laboratory in the State of Paraná, Brazil.
Copies of the education CD produced by FRAME for UK schools and colleges last year have been sent to the NSPCA, South Africa’s only government appointed anticruelty organisation, for use by its research ethics and special projects teams. The organisation was established in 1955 and deals with national issues as well as providing support in response to disasters and emergencies. Its inspectors work under a 1962 Animals Protection Act and have responsibility for the welfare of animals in many different areas including wildlife and farm stock as well as laboratories. FRAME has also sent a package of leaflets, posters and journals to the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Cape Town. Scientists there are trying to find ways to replace some of the animal models used in research projects and reduce the number of animals involved. The university’s Faculty of Health Sciences has the oldest medical school in South Africa.
Indian Conference Proceedings Published in ATLA An International Symposium on Alternate Models in Biological Research: Present and Future Perspective in Toxicology, took place at the Indian Institute of Toxicology Research in Lucknow and a conference report and abstracts from the speakers’ presentations has been published in ATLA (Alternatives to Laboratory Animals) FRAME’s scientific journal. The symposium was attended by more than 250 people and included speakers from several different continents, from both industry and academia. Chairman of the FRAME Trustees Prof. Michael Balls said: “I regret that I could not accept the invitation to be at the Lucknow symposium. As Editor of ATLA, I am pleased to publish a report on the symposium, together with abstracts of some of the presentations.”
RAISING AWARENESS ABOUT FRAME If you are reading this copy of FRAME News then it is extremely likely that you are already a FRAME supporter or at least agree with its aims. We carry out regular projects to raise awareness of FRAME and the work it does. We have links with national and regional press that have helped raise our profile. Journalists increasingly contact us when they need comments about alternatives to laboratory animals and the laws governing their use.
people are learning about us and our work. However, if we are to continue to campaign for the development and introduction of valid laboratory methods that do not need the use of animals, we need more people to be aware of our efforts and our need for support. Would you consider helping? We can supply leaflets and publicity materials, if you would like to hold a local event to promote us. Perhaps you have links to your local newspaper or community newsletter, and they would be happy to print something about us.
A CD about the Three Rs has been distributed to schools all over the UK, so an increasing number of young
If there is some way that you could help and you would like some leaflets or other items, please call Anne on 0115 958 4740 and let her know your plans. Your event could be included in future copies of FRAME News and on our website.
WAYS TO SUPPORT FRAME FRAME is deeply grateful to the wonderful people who help us regularly by sending donations, holding events and raising funds for us in many other ways. Thank you for your generous support. We could not continue our research without you.
Have you considered any of the following ways to help? Bookworms… FRAME’s ultimate aim is the elimination of the need to use laboratory animals in any kind of medical or scientific procedure.
Try out our new online bookshop at http://frame.eclector.com/ where you can find 1000s of bargains on all subjects. Each purchase helps FRAME and many of the books are at less than High Street prices.
Hold an event FRAME relies entirely on grants and donations to carry out its vital work promoting the development of new and valid methods that will replace the need for laboratory animals in medical and scientific research, education, and testing. It receives no financial support from local or central government so any gifts from supporters, either individuals or companies, are always gladly received. As an independent charity, FRAME welcomes any donation, however small, either from individuals or companies.
Published by: FRAME Russell and Burch House, 96–98 North Sherwood Street, Nottingham NG1 4EE
Why not hold an event locally to raise money for FRAME? Email email@example.com with the details and we can supply you with leaflets and other items to give away to your guests.
www.justgiving.co.uk/FRAME If you do hold an event for FRAME why not use our JustGiving site to boost the funds even further. It’s easy to register on our site (www.justgiving.co.uk/frame) then tell all your sponsors to make their donations through it. The site handles all the paperwork and any red tape.
Go electronic When you opt to receive information electronically you can save us a huge amount on print and postage costs. That means we can use more of our limited funds to search for replacement methods that will remove the need for laboratory animals. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to be placed on our electronic mailing list.
Do you have an old car that needs scrapping? It can cost a lot of money to have scrap cars taken away and you might not recoup the cost in value. A new salvage service called Giveacar can collect your vehicle, free of charge, and then either re-sell or recycle it on FRAME’s behalf. Log on today at www.giveacar.co.uk to help us AND the environment.
Donations Please send donations directly to our office (address on the left) as a cheque made out to FRAME. Or log on to www.frame.org.uk and click on the button marked “Donate Now”. (Please give reference FRAME News)
Phone: 0115 958 4740 www.frame.org.uk E-mail: email@example.com Registered Charity No. 259464
Gift Aid it Ask for a Gift Aid form. UK taxpayers can opt to give us the tax paid on donations, so your gift is worth up to 25% more to us.
Corporate sponsorship There are many advantages in being a corporate sponsor of FRAME. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for details of the scheme.