Pharma industry collaboration to reduce animal testing for medicinal products flourishing as more companies sign up and share data

A voluntary non-profit collaboration which kicked off a year ago between four pharmaceutical companies(1) - supported by EFPIA – and the European Chemicals Agency which could ultimately lead to a decrease in animal testing is today being hailed a success. 

The contribution pilot project has expanded considerably with three further companies(2) signing up and now over 500 tests - containing physicochemical, toxicological and ecotoxicological substance data - have been uploaded containing information about the hazard properties of 94 substances. 

The data is made publicly available and can be used to help develop new approach methodologies, decreasing the need for the use of animals in research.  

More information is available on the ECHA webpage  

Since the adoption of the EU legislation governing animal use, EFPIA and its members have been publishing reports to visibly highlight industry actions on putting animal welfare principles and the 3Rs (replace, refine, reduce) into action(3). This illustrates a continued drive to reduce the number of animals used, refine experiments to minimise the impact on animals, and replace animal experiments wherever possible with alternatives. 

Kirsty Reid, Director Science Policy, EFPIA, said:  

"EFPIA members are engaging in a wide range of practical activities to help drive the development, uptake and promotion of non-animal technologies and methodologies as well as working across numerous projects to improve animal welfare. The ongoing success of this joint collaborations is another step closer to phasing in these new ways of working to reduce and refine – and ultimately stop animal testing wherever possible. 

Relevant Links 

[1] Boehringer Ingelheim, F.Hoffmann-La Roche, Johnson & Johnson, and Merck KGaA

[2] Bayer, GlaxoSmithKline and Novartis