Animal experimentation

Animal experimentation has been and is fundamental to the progress of medicine. Almost all currently-used drugs (antibiotics, painkillers, cutting-edge anti-cancer drugs and many others) were discovered and developed through studies carried out on animals. Even today, it is still necessary to use animal models to understand and treat serious and widespread diseases for which no satisfactory treatments are available, including dementia, stroke, heart disease and cancer.

As in many international research centres of excellence, part of the activities at our university are also research activities that involve the use of animal models. It is important to know that Unife researchers only use such models when it is necessary and there is no alternative method. All researchers at the University of Ferrara are committed to respecting the "3R principle, that is the Replacement, Refinement and Reduction" principle, the basis of the current European Directive.

The University of Ferrara considers animal animal welfare a central aspect of experimentation. That's why it offers researchers state-of-the-art facilities to breed and use the animals, frequent training opportunities and a team of experienced staff (specialist technicians, a veterinarian, animal welfare officers) to support them in their work. In addition to this, all research projects requiring the use of animals carried out at our university are screened by theAnimal Welfare Committee and authorised by the Italian Ministry of Health.

Almost all animals used in animal experiments at the University of Ferrara are mice and rats. A very small percentage is made up of fish, amphibians and monkeys. Dogs and cats are not used at Unife.

Animal research is strictly regulated by the European Directive 2010/63/EU and Italian Legislative Decree No. 26 dated 4th March 2014.

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