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Charity lays down challenge to reduce lab animal use

Biomedical research charity NC3Rs has launched a competition for academics and industry to create technologies that reduce, refine or replace the use of animals in fundamental research and in product development.

The Crack It grants call, announced on 1 August, is being sponsored by three industrial partners: oil company Shell; agribusiness Syngenta; and chemicals and food products manufacturer Unilever. It will focus on three areas, toxicity studies, improved in vitro methods and respiratory science.

The first of the challenges, Dartpaths, aims to map developmental and reproductive toxicity genes and pathways for cross-species comparison of toxic compound effects. Under phase one, researchers can apply for up to £100,000 and for phase two, £1 million is available. Shell and Syngenta are supporting this call. 

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