To commemorate the centenary of the publication of Darwin’s 'The Origin of Species', the Universities Federation for Animal Welfare commissioned a systematic study of the progress in humane techniques in the laboratory.
In 1959, the report by Russell and Burch was published as 'The Principles of Humane Experimental Techniques', the basic tenet of their report being that “the humanest possible treatment of experimental animals, far from being an obstacle, is actually a prerequisite for a successful animal experiment.”
The authors proposed the principles of Replacement, Reduction and Refinement (most often referred to as the 3R’s) as the key strategies to provide a systematic framework to achieve the goal of humane experimental techniques.
Today throughout the world the principles of the 3R’s are embedded in legislation which governs the use of animals in science.
FRAME has prodcued an excellent chart on strategies to achieve the 3R's when planning projects which may involve the use of animals. Contact FRAME for more information.