3Rs - Alternatives to Animal Use

The NSW Animal Research legislation encapsulates the principles of alternatives to the use of animals for research and teaching purposes including

  1. The replacement of animals with other methods
  2. The reduction in the number of animals used
  3. The refinement of techniques used to reduce the impact on animals.

Researchers and teachers must consider these principles during the design and conduct of their projects.

The below links provide information for alternatives to the use of animals in research projects.



The University of Newcastle ACEC regards the use of tissue from freshly euthanased animals by a researcher to be a reasonable mechanism for reducing the number of animals required for research and teaching purposes and, as such, this practice is highly encouraged by the ACEC.

Prior animal ethics approval is not required for this practice provided that:

  • The animal is killed as part of another legitimate authorised process (e.g. part of another currently approved protocol, in the abattoir, cull animals as part of normal animal husbandry procedures) AND
  • The animal is not bred specifically for the second researcher AND
  • The animal is killed ONLY by a person authorised to do so (e.g. under a current Animal Research Authority, because of the nature of their employment etc) AND
  • The researcher has no input into the treatment or handling of the animal prior to its euthanasia or death AND
  • The researcher has no input into the manner of euthanasia of the animal, or the timing of its euthanasia AND
  • The tissue is collected AFTER death of the animal is confirmed. The researcher may be present when the animal is killed and may remove tissues from the animal OR the animal tissue is removed by the person authorised to euthanase the animal and passed onto the researcher OR the whole animal carcass may be passed onto the researcher.


Links for alternative databases and search engines

With acknowledgement to the University of Virginia Animal Care and Use Committee

  • ALTWEB - Alternatives to Animal Testing on the Web
  • Animal Ethics INFOLINK - NSW Department of Primary Industries and Animal Research Review Panel
  • AWI - Animal Welfare Institute
  • AWIC - Animal Welfare Information Center
  • CAAT - The Johns Hopkins Center for Alternative to Animal Testing)
  • CRIS - Current Research Information Service
  • ECVAM - European Centre for the Validation of Alternative Methods
  • FRAME - Fund for the Replacement of Animals in Medical Education
  • ICCVAM - Inter-agency Coordinating Committee on the Validation of Alternative Methods
  • MEDLINE - PubMed, Grateful Med, NLM
  • MGI - Mouse Genome Informatics
  • NCA - Netherlands Centre Alternatives to Animal Use
  • NORINA - Alternatives in education search engine
  • PRIMATELIT - A bibliographic database for primatology
  • SCAW - Scientists Center for Animal Welfare
  • UCCAA - University of California Center for Animal Alternatives

Alternatives to specific procedures