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The National Centre for the Replacement, Refinement and Reduction of Animals in Research (NC3Rs) was established in May 2004, following the recommendation of a House of Lords Select Committee report on Animals in Scientific Procedures, published in July 2002.

The NC3Rs replaces and builds upon the Medical Research Council’s Centre for Best Practice for Animals in Research (CBPAR) following a survey of scientific stakeholders by led the Inter-Departmental Group on the 3Rs (IDG3Rs).

The NC3Rs has progressed many of the activities that were proposed in the report of the House of Lords Select Committee (e.g. those relating to experimental design, welfare assessments of genetically altered mice and web resources).

The Centre has since embarked on an extensive and ambitious portfolio of new activities to achieve advances in the 3Rs in the UK.

The Centre’s mission is to use the 3Rs to support science, innovation and animal welfare in the biosciences.

The NC3Rs is dedicated to all 3Rs – replacing, refining and reducing the use of animals in research and testing.

Many areas of medical, veterinary and biological research and testing currently depend on the use of animals. An important challenge is to develop scientifically robust non-animal alternatives. Where animal use continues to be necessary, every effort must be made to minimise the numbers of animals used and to improve their welfare.

Investing in, advancing and implementing the 3Rs are important for scientific, legal and ethical reasons.