Beckman Research Institute of City of Hope's Position Statement on the Use of Animals in Biomedical Research
A pioneer in bone marrow transplantation and genetics, City of Hope is a National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center, offering premier research and treatment for cancer and other life-threatening diseases, such as diabetes and HIV/AIDS.
Beckman Research Institute of City of Hope leads the world in biomedical research, and whenever possible, our researchers use alternative methods to animal models, such as cell and tissue culture and computer simulation. However, in many circumstances, the responsible and limited use of animals is necessary for the discovery of new therapies. In fact, without animal research, medical advances in cancer, diabetes, HIV/AIDS, and heart disease, including lifesaving procedures, medicines, and vaccines, would have been impossible. Most recently, animal research has been critical to the development of vaccines and treatments to combat the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19.
Beckman Research Institute of City of Hope is equipped with one of the finest, state-of-the-art animal research facilities in the nation. Our animal care and use program is assured by the National Institutes of Health Office of Laboratory Animal Welfare, registered with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and fully accredited by AAALAC International — the highest level in animal care facility standards.
Our Humane and Responsible Approach
We embrace the philosophy of the three R's: reduction, replacement, and refinement. As a research community, we're committed to developing, validating, and using techniques that can reduce the number of animals used, replace higher animals with other lower species or other non-animal models wherever possible, and refine procedures to ensure the most humane treatment possible.
In addition, we recognize and support the following principles governing the care and use of animals in research, testing, and education:
- The U.S. Government Principles for the Utilization and Care of Vertebrate Animals Used in Testing, Research, and Training
- The establishment of an institutional animal care and use committee whose membership includes scientists, veterinarians qualified in laboratory animal medicine, a non-scientist, and non-affiliated members of the public concerned with the ethical use of animals in research
- The review of proposed animal research projects by the institutional animal care and use committee to ensure the proposed research meets ethical considerations and can be conducted humanely and effectively
- The accreditation of the animal care and use program by the Association for Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care International (AAALAC) and other verifiable assurances that the animal care and use program meets or exceeds appropriate standards and regulations (Animal Welfare Act, Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals, Public Health Service Policy on Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals)
- The establishment of clear lines of responsibility for the institutional animal care and use program to ensure that it is administered and conducted in accordance with federal, state, and local requirements and institutional guidelines regarding animal experimentation
- The establishment of workshops, seminars, and training programs designed to increase investigator awareness of public concerns and institutional responsibilities in the use of living animals in biomedical research and to teach proper methods in animal technology
Only through the humane and responsible use of animal models can our faculty and investigators continue to make scientific breakthroughs and deliver the highest quality of care and treatment to our patients.
For more about our research, visit Beckman Research Institute of City of Hope.