Timeline

/Timeline

1978 – First human stem cells discovered

Stem cell research shifted to humans in 1978 when Dr Gregor Pindull published findings of haematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) in human cord blood. Previous work had been able to identify similar cells in other mammalian species. This was the first observation of human stem cells that would give rise to similar cells and signalled an [...]

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1977 – First alternatives developed for skin irritants

Prior to 1977, tests for epidermal responses to substances were carried out primarily on animals, which generally produced misleading results. In order to effectively, and safely, investigate reactions in human subjects Griffith and Buehler developed the ‘repeated-insult patch test’. By concentrating and localising samples of the substance to a small, confined grid of 12mm, researchers [...]

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1969 – FRAME founded

FRAME was founded and registered as a charity in 1969 by Dorothy Hegarty in Wimbledon, London. Since then, FRAME has moved to its current office in Nottingham in 1981 and established the FRAME Alternatives Laboratory at the University of Nottingham in 1991. The first issue of FRAME’s peer-reviewed international science journal Alternatives to Laboratory Animals (ALTA) [...]

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1966 – Animal Welfare Act passed in USA

The United States is one of the world’s prominent users of animals for experimental testing. A crucial moment for alternatives occurred in 1966 when the US passed the Animal Welfare Act, which, to this day, is the primary legislation in America regulating the transport, sale, and handling of animals intended to be used for research [...]

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1960 – First use of video to replace live animals in education

In 1960 the University of California produced a seven minute instructional video for students demonstrating the steps of anaphylaxis using a single guinea pig. Although the video depicts the full anaphylactic process, ultimately resulting in fatality, the use of video technology provided the University with the opportunity to save dozens of guinea pigs that would have [...]

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1959 – Russell and Burch publish The Principles

The Principles of Humane Experimental Technique written by W.M.S. Russell and R.L. Burch in 1959 is arguably the most influential moment in alternatives to the use of animals in experimentation history. Although it had little impact when it was first published, the book, and the concepts introduced by Russell and Burch, would prove to be exceptionally important [...]

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1907 – Harrison grows from nerve cells by ‘hanging drop’ technique

The turn of the century witnessed an influx of cell culture in experimentation. However, few of the advancements made were as pivotal as the work conducted by Ross Granville Harrison at Johns Hopkins University in 1907. To this point, in vitro work had become quite good at observing organic tissue microscopically, however, attempts to manipulate [...]

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1895 – Discovery of X-rays

German physicist Wilhelm Rontgen is recognised as the first individual to study the properties of X-rays in 1895. Roughly a decade later, X-rays would be adopted as a medical tool to non-invasively observe patients. The ability to study a subject without the need for vivisection provided an important new alternate methodology to many animal studies. [...]

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1885 – Roux maintains embryonic chick cells in saline solution

The groundwork for modern tissue culture was established in 1885 by German Wilhelm Roux. An embryologist who studied developmental mechanics, Roux was curious about the evolutionary machinery at the cellular level. Roux’s work to isolate the medullary plate (a key structure in the developing nervous system) of a chicken embryo and sustain the cells’ viability [...]

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1876 – Cruelty to Animals Act passed in UK

In 1876 the UK passed the Cruelty to Animals Act, which directly highlighted the practice of using animals as test subjects, and outlined prosecution for those considered to be unlawfully experimenting. Key points of the Act include the importance for researchers to define the necessity for the use of animals as well as proper care [...]

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