The 3r principle
The 3R principle is based on the following three aspects: First, animal experiments should be replaced by suitable alternatives wherever possible (replace).
If this is not possible, the second thing is to reduce the number of animal experiments to the lowest possible level (Reduce). Thirdly, the optimization of scientific methods and measurement procedures, the careful selection of animal models and species-appropriate housing should reduce the stress on the test animals as much as possible (refine).
Contact point and support for animal researchers
An important task of the center is to coordinate animal experiments in the Rhine-Neckar region even better in the future so that comparable test arrangements are not carried out twice at different locations. A database should help to facilitate the mutual exchange between the laboratories. The new center is intended to be a single point of contact when it comes to designing new experiments. The 3R-Center Rhein-Neckar would like to involve the scientists who are already working in experimental animal research or who intend to do so, because they are best able to refine their experiments in the interests of animal welfare and to reduce the number of experiments . For this reason, researchers at the 3R-Center receive support in the selection of meaningful animal models, training on the 3R principles and special seminars. It is also about free access to research results. The 3R-Center Rhein-Neckar is committed to the Open Science principles and encourages scientists to work and publish according to these principles.
Obtain data using alternative approaches
In order to further reduce animal experiments, the 3R-Center supports research projects that obtain data with the help of alternative approaches. These include, for example, laboratory tests on cell systems and organoids (in vitro approaches) as well as experiments with the help of computer models and simulations or with the help of retrieving data from special databases (in silico). Such big data approaches hold great potential for animal welfare in research in the field of preclinical neurosciences.