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Alternatives to Laboratory Animals - ATLA

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Achievements in Raising Awareness on the Use of Alternative Methods in Latin America and the Caribbean

Luis Ulpiano Pérez, Gisela Antonia Murillo, José Ramón Pascual and Enieyis Tur

Activities to promote the awareness and acceptance of alternatives in Latin America and the Caribbean were initiated four years ago. As a result, information about the Three Rs has been distributed to students, teachers, researchers and authorities in more than two hundred academic and research centres from seventeen countries. Short courses and lecture series were presented to hundreds of attendees from those sectors. Many educators have already been persuaded of the advantages of using alternatives. So far, models, software and videos have been used, and it is intended that further resources in the Spanish language will be produced to assist the replacement of animal use in practical classes. As an integral part and a remarkable event of the project, the First Caribbean and Latin American Workshop on Alternative Methods was held in Santiago de Cuba in December 2001. In spite of these accomplishments, much still needs to be done in order to increase the use of alternatives in various fields of scientific and educational activity within the region. The commitment is still present and further initiatives will ensue.