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September 9, 2009

Seventh World Congress on Alternatives and Animal Use in the Life Sciences

Humane Society International

From August 30 through September 3, 2009, scientists and others committed to the advancement of alternatives to animal testing and experimentation—including senior staff from Humane Society International and our sister organizations—gathered in Rome, Italy for the Seventh World Congress on Alternatives and Animal Use in the Life Sciences.

The motto for this Congress was "Calling on Science," a title that emphasized the fact that scientific advances are the foundation of progress towards the ultimate replacement of animals in safety testing and other types of laboratory experiments. This year marked a number of key milestones and setbacks along the road to replacement, including the 50th anniversary of the book that launched the modern alternatives movement, the second phase of the European Union marketing ban on animal-tested cosmetics, and first wave of testing under the EU’s “REACH” chemicals regulation, which is projected to spell suffering and death for up to 20 million animals.

The Humane Society has a long-standing involvement in the Congress: as an organizer, financial contributor, and presenter. As at past World Congresses, we presented the Russell and Burch Award to a scientist who has made outstanding contributions toward the advancement of alternative methods in the areas of biomedical research, testing, or higher education.