The 3Rs-Centre Utrecht Life Sciences continues NKCA activities

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The 3Rs-Centre Utrecht Life Sciences continues NKCA activities

Contributor: Jan van der Valk, 3Rs Centre-Utrech Life Sciences

For 4 years (2010-2014) the Netherlands Knowledge Centre on Alternatives (NKCA) was responsible for promoting the application of the 3R-alternatives – replacement, reduction and refinement – in the Netherlands. The Centre, which was a collaboration between the RIVM and the Utrecht University, was established by the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport and has been operational since January 2010. The dossier on ‘animal testing and 3R-alternatives’ was transferred to the Ministry of Economic Affairs in January 2013.

On December 18th, the revised Dutch Act on Animal Experimentation came into force. As a result the NKCA was dissolved. The National competent authority (CCD: Centrale Commissie Dierproeven), responsible for project authorization, and the National committtee for the protection of animals used for scientific purposes (NCaD: Nationaal Comité advies dierproevenbeleid) were established as a consequence of the revised act.

The RIVM continues to be involved in facilitating the acceptance and implementation of 3Rs methods in (inter)national guidelines and regulations regarding the risk assessment of chemicals and the safety and quality control of medicines, including vaccines.

The Utrecht University’s 3Rs-Centre Utrecht Life Sciences continues its involvement in 3Rs education and training (E&T). It provides the chair of the Stakeholders working group on E&T, which serves as an advisor to the responsible ministry on matters related to E&T in laboratory animal science. It also informs scientists and the general public on 3Rs matters through its website, a monthly newsletter, and Twitter (@3VCentrumULS).

The centre is located within the Dept. Animals in Science & Society of the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of the Utrecht University and is affiliated with Utrecht Life Sciences.