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Asking questions about harms

As a lay person, you are not expected to be expert in the potential harms caused to animals, nor how

to avoid or alleviate these. Other members of the ERB should provide this expertise, but you should

feel free to ask questions that enable you to understand the impacts on animals, so that you can

consider the balance of benefit versus harm in the project as a whole, and in individual procedures

where relevant.

Harms to animals: key questions for all ERB members

 Is it clear what will happen to the animals throughout their lifetimes?

 Are all the potential adverse effects (both physical and psychological) identified and described in terms

of what they will actually mean for the animals?

 Do you get a clear sense of the severity of adverse effects likely to be caused to animals in individual

procedures within the project?

 Are you satisfied that everything possible will be done to minimise and avoid harms to animals in

the project?

 Are you confident that all of the 3Rs have been adequately addressed?

Reducing harms

The boxes below and overleaf include points to help consider whether the 3Rs have been applied and the potential

harms to animals have been reduced as far as possible (see also Chapter 3 for definitions and additional examples

of the 3Rs).

Implementing the Three Rs in practice: points to consider

1. Replacement

Are the following aspects clearly explained and addressed?

 The need to use animals to achieve the objectives and why non-animal approaches are considered

unsuitable.

 Efforts made to search for alternatives to the use of animals and consider ways of avoiding animal use.

 Use of non-animal methods in any part of the project; and how animal and non-animal methods relate to

and build on one another.

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