SCHEER Final Opinion on
The need for non-human primates in biomedical research, production and testing of products and devices (update 2017)
This Opinion focuses on the need for non-human primates (NHP) in biomedical research, production and testing of products and devices and updates the earlier 2009 Opinion.
A public consultation on this Opinion was opened on the website of the Scientific Committees from 10 February to 26 March 2017. Information about the public consultation was broadly communicated to national authorities, international organisations and other stakeholders. The public consultation involved 190 contributors from Academia, researchers, Member States, Non-Governmental Organisations and industry. Each submission was carefully considered by the SCHEER and the scientific Opinion has been revised to take relevant comments into account. The literature has been accordingly updated with relevant publications.
Content of the Opinion
The Commission has requested the SCHEER to review and update its 2009 Opinion, as foreseen by Directive on the protection of animals used for scientific purposes (2010/63/EU). The 2017 Opinion addresses six main issues in the mandate of NHP studies and tests, such as areas of research where NHP continue to be used today, opportunities for reducing and refining their use and scientific viewpoints on when NHP use will no longer be necessary. It also considers potential implications an EU-wide ban of NHP use would have on biomedical research.
The new opinion also highlights the many scientific approaches that could significantly contribute to the replacement, reduction and refinement (3Rs) for the use of NHPs, using alternative methods, training, improvement of techniques and protocols, sharing of knowledge, removal of barriers and research needs.