Lower Saxony Animal Welfare Award for MHH Project R2N

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Ministry of Agriculture honors Professor Dr. André Bleich in the category "Alternative Methods to Animal Testing".

Replacing, reducing or completely avoiding animal experiments in research and improving the conditions for laboratory animals - this characterizes the work of Professor Dr. André Bleich, Director of the Institute for Laboratory Animal Science and the Central Animal Laboratory of the Hannover Medical School (MHH). On Monday, the scientist was awarded the "Lower Saxony Animal Welfare Prize" in the category "Alternative Methods to Animal Experiments" for the research network "R2N - Replace and Reduce from Lower Saxony", which he heads. The prize, worth 6,000 euros, was awarded for the first time by the Lower Saxony Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Consumer Protection. The state representative for animal protection in Lower Saxony, Michaela Dämmrich presented the award. The "Doctors Against Animal Experiments" association also received an award.

Copyright: Karin Kaiser / MHH
Research for animal welfare

With the "Lower Saxony Animal Protection Award", the ministry wants to honor people and organizations that are particularly committed to the protection of animals in the state. The decision had been made by a jury of six experts. "I am very happy that we can honor the commitment to animals as sensitive fellow creatures in Lower Saxony in this way. Last but not least, I hope that we will also use the award to promote the network and exchange of experts and active people in animal protection," says Michaela Dämmrich. The R2N consortium, which was launched in 2017, includes 15 working groups from seven institutions in Lower Saxony. The aim of the project is to develop and apply non-animal methods, especially in basic research.

"Particularly in basic research, the number of animal experiments has been constant for years, while in other research areas they are declining," explains Professor Bleich. However, interdisciplinary collaboration has already enabled various alternative models to be developed for use in biomedical research. "These systems have also already been used, for example in COVID-19 research," says the scientist. The success of the research alliance is also reflected in the scientific journals. More than 50 publications have been published there since the R2N consortium was established.

Informationhow research is currently working to reduce, improve or completely replace animal testing, can be found on the website https://www.3r-forschung.de/.