Bf3R Research Funding in the area of 3R - Replacement, Reduction and Refinement
The German Centre for the Protection of Laboratory Animals (Bf3R) provides funding for scientific research projects. In addition to the development of alternative methods in its own laboratory, the Bf3R supports innovative approaches at German universities and non-university research institutes addressing alternatives to animal experiments and refinement measures.
Objective of Bf3R research funding
The Bf3R research funding is intended to enable applicants to obtain, within a reasonable period of time, the experimental proof-of-concept data required for a successful application for major funding programs, for example the German Research Foundation (DFG) or the "Alternatives to animal experiments" program of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).
Since the start of this funding program (as ZEBET research funding) in 1990, more than 140 research projects have been supported (as at February 2017). About ten projects with an average funding of 35.000 euros per year and duration of one to three years are supported at the same time. A comparable funding program is also offered in Germany by the SET Foundation (Stiftung zur Förderung der Erforschung von Ersatz- und Ergänzungsmethoden zur Einschränkung von Tierversuchen).
The evaluation of the applications, which are submitted every two years after a public announcement, is carried out by scientists of the Bf3R and other departments of the BfR, as well as by external experts from other research institutes. High priority areas for the Bf3R research funding are:
• the replacement and reduction of animal experiments in areas of medical research or basic biological research in which a large number of animals are used (e.g. cancer research) or in which the experiment imposes a high degree of pain, suffering, or damage to the animals (e.g. sepsis or wound healing experiments)
• the identification, classification and reduction of pain and suffering in laboratory animals and the improvement of animal welfare (refinement)