Use of animals overseas

All researchers funded by the MRC, BBSRC, EPSRC, NERC, NC3Rs, Defra, Wellcome Trust and other AMRC charities, who use animals, are required to implement the guidance ‘Responsibility in the Use of Animals in Bioscience Research’ as a condition of grant funding. A key principle (page 14) is the expectation that research conducted overseas should be carried out to welfare standards consistent with those in the UK.

For studies using non-human primates, cats, dogs or equines, this is assessed during NC3Rs review of research proposals. For studies involving other species, applicants are recommended to complete the following checklist as appropriate, and include it in their application, for consideration by the funder’s review panel:

For animal research overseas, some research councils require a signed statement from both UK and overseas principal investigators – see the MRC and BBSRC websites for details.

Choosing contractors for animal research

The NC3Rs has produced a PDF presentation to remind applicants of the animal welfare standards expected by the major UK public funding bodies. Applicants contracting out animal research or collaborating with other laboratories (regardless of species) are advised to view the presentation well in advance of submitting their application, especially if the intention is to place the work outside of the UK.