Spec. Issue 2006 - Article Summary

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Workshop of experts: Definition, recognition, assessment, and alleviation of animal distress in the laboratory

Kathleen M. Conlee1 and Lesley A. Lambert2
1The Humane Society of the United States, Animal Research Issues, Washington, DC, USA
2Linacre College, Oxford University, Oxford, UK

Distress in animal research is difficult to address and often overlooked, despite mandates in the U.S. to minimise animal distress. Consequently, The Humane Society of the U.S. held an expert workshop on animal distress, including whether creation of an operational
definition of distress is possible. Discussion topics included what an operational definition of distress should encompass; prevention, causes, and measurement of distress; and regulation of distress. Participants agreed that creating a practical definition of distress is challenging, but that crafting a description of what might constitute animal distress, supported by specific examples, is possible. Workshop findings and future efforts on distress are discussed here.

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