September 11, 2013

NIDA senior staff and officials from the United Kingdom met August 1, 2013, to discuss animal research regulations, ways to enhance the contribution the life sciences can make to economic growth on both sides of the Atlantic, toxicity testing for emerging synthetic drugs, and areas where U.S. and U.K. drug abuse researchers may be able to collaborate. The United Kingdom is implementing animal research regulations designed to replace animal use, reduce the number of animals used, and refine research procedures to minimize animal suffering. Division of Basic Neuroscience and Behavioral Research Acting Director Joni Rutter, Ph.D., discussed some of the alternative approaches that NIDA is also supporting, while emphasizing the continued need for animal experimentation. NIDA Associate Director for Scientific Affairs Susan Weiss, Ph.D., and International Program Director Steven W. Gust, Ph.D., also participated in the meeting. Lord Taylor of Holbeach, U.K. Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Criminal Information at the Home Office, who is responsible for U.K. regulations on use of animals in research, led the British delegation. Other members of the U.K. delegation included Judy MacArthur Clark, CBE, MRCVS, who heads the Animals in Science Regulation Unit at the Home Office; Dr. Iain Williams from the U.K. Embassy in Washington, DC; and Benedict Collins, Lord Taylor’s private secretary.