FRAME has welcomed a new EU strategy designed to promote ways of integrating data obtained through non-animal tests with computer models of the human body. The strategy aims to reduce animal testing while improving the protection of human health from exposure to chemicals.

The strategy has been published by the EU Reference Laboratory for Alternatives to Animal Testing (EURL ECVAM). It cites four areas where it says increased knowledge of how chemicals affect the human body would be beneficial: absorption (following exposure through air, water, food or via skin), distribution (mainly via blood transport), metabolism (biochemical transformation) and excretion. These are known as the ADME processes.

It calls for development of new non-animal test methods, and sets a timeline over the next five years for their standardisation. It also says that systems should be designed to enable a more collaborative environment so that data and methods can be more easily shared.

FRAME has recommended more collaboration between scientists looking at all kinds of areas that currently involve animal-based experiments. Sharing knowledge and data to develop more human-relevant, scientifically valid methods would benefit not just saftey testing, but could also speed up the process of finding new drugs and treatments.

Scientific Director Dr Gerry Kenna said: “FRAME promotes, undertakes and supports the development and evaluation of new and scientifically valid non-animal research methods. We also foster partnerships and collaborations with relevant industries, regulatory agencies and academic scientists to enable those new methods to be validated and brought into regular use.”

More details can be found on the EU Joint Research Centre website: ECVAM Strategy