University signs Concordat on animal research

The University of Glasgow has joined the UK's other leading research universities in an initiative aimed at increasing public understanding of scientific research using animals.

As a signatory to the Concordat on Openness in Animal Research – an initiative led by the organisation Understanding Animal Research – the University has made four pledges:

  1. We will be clear about when, how and why we use animals in research;
  2. We will enhance our communications with the media and the public about our research using animals;
  3. We will be proactive in providing opportunities for the public to find out about research using animals;
  4. We will report on progress annually and share our experiences.

To move towards realising these commitments fully, a new webpage has been created which explains in more detail the University’s position on animal research.

The page includes statistics on the number of animals used in Home Office-licensed procedures, as well as responses to frequently-asked questions, and is available at: Openess in animal research 

In addition, news stories published and issued by the Communications Office will make it clear when research has involved the use of animals.

David Newall, Secretary of Court, said: “The University of Glasgow believes animals have made, and continue to make, a vital contribution to health research. Without their contribution many of the medicines and therapies we have at our disposal, and much of our knowledge, just wouldn’t exist.

“Animal research is highly-regulated, both by government and by the University. We only use animals in research where there are no viable alternatives and we provide high-level veterinary care and facilities so as to minimise suffering.

“Much of our work is carried out without the use of animals – for example, by studying cells in a Petri dish or using computer modelling.  We have a number of scientists working on developing new ways of conducting research that will replace, reduce or refine the use of animals.

“We believe it is important that people have information to help them understand why animals are used, how they are used and the difference it makes to advancing medical knowledge.”

Any staff who would like to discuss issues or concerns around communicating animal research can contact stuart.forsyth@glasgow.ac.uk or call 0141 330 4831.

For more information:


First published: 20 May 2015

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