The Zhejiang Institute for Food and Drug Control (ZJIFDC) recently opened a non-animal testing lab in China that provides services to domestic and international cosmetic companies. The Institute for In Vitro Sciences (IIVS) helped provide guidance and train staff at ZJIFDC on how to adopt and implement alternative test methods at the new lab.
Wyss Core Faculty member Jennifer Lewis was named the winner of the 2017 Lush Prize for her work to reduce the use of animals in science. Jennifer Lewis and her team have created organs-on-chips that can be used for drug testing, investigative toxicology and as disease models. Lewis’ plans on using the prize money to fund her teams’ lab work and further contribute to the goal of eliminating animals used in toxicology testing and research.
A group of researchers at the Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU) are using human skin cells to try and reduce the need for animal models in diabetes research. The skin cells are donated by patients with conditions such as type II diabetes and used to create stem cells which are used to further diabetes research and test potential new medicines.
In a world-first from Australian scientists, research labs are now growing cancerous tumours in sponge cultures in the laboratory rather than on mice.
The process, which is faster and cheaper as well as kinder to animals, will also see new treatments for cancer fast tracked.
In ending the traditional time consuming process of growing cancerous tumours on mice, new drugs can be tested quicker to see if they work.
Canada has a new centre set up to look into alternatives to animal testing. Based at the University of Windsor, Ontario, the Canadian Centre for Alternatives to Animal Methods (CCAAM) will focus solely on human-based test methods.
The university also houses CCAAM subsidiary, the Canadian Centre for the Validation of Alternative Methods (CCVAM).
“A paradigm shift is needed to transition from animal models to human-based frameworks,” Charu Chandrasekera, founding executive director said. “We have to accept the limitations of animal models and try to overcome them.” She envisages that the centre will be the Canadian hub that brings together regulators, academia, industry, and policy makers.
IIVS, supported by a grant from Colgate-Palmolive, held a training course this month in Goiania, Brazil focused on two in vitro methods with international regulatory acceptance status. The course, Alternative Methods for Evaluation of Toxicity, was attended by over 30 participants from industry and government who participated in both lectures and hands-on exercises. The training course was organized as a satellite workshop to the Congress of Brazilian Toxicology, CBTox, in Goias, Brazil.
In recent years, Brazil has been putting greater emphasis on non-animal test methods for the regulation of products – especially cosmetics. ANVISA, the Brazilian National Health Surveillance Agency, which is responsible for the registration of products, currently recognizes the use of a number of alternative methods. In 2014 CONCEA, a multi-institutional council responsible for controlling and monitoring the implementation of alternative methods in Brazil, officially adopted 17 alternative test methods with international regulatory acceptance, and established a five-year term for their implementation.