The three Rs

All UBC animal researchers are required by the CCAC to follow an evaluative process called the Three Rs: Replacement, Reduction and Refinement.

Our researchers make every effort to replace research animals with inanimate systems or non-animal models, reduce the number of animals involved, and refine husbandry and experimental procedures to minimize pain and distress.

At UBC we believe that the 3Rs is not always best served by using the fewest number of animals, but rather by ensuring that the fewest possible are used to make meaningful contributions to scientific understanding. If scientifically valid results can be found by working with more animals on an individual study, this can eliminate the need for further studies and avoid the unnecessary use of more animals in future research.

While mathematical and non-animal models are becoming increasingly sophisticated, in many circumstances they are not able to replicate the complexity and unpredictability of living biological systems.