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Animal Experiments: Vaccination

Volume 487: debated on Thursday 29 January 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps her Department has taken to ensure that the target animal batch safety testing of veterinary vaccines (a) is not taking place under any existing licence and (b) will not be permitted under any future licence unless an application for a waiver has been rejected by the Veterinary Medicines Directorate or the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Inspectorate has identified a specific reason why an application cannot be made. (252992)

Under current arrangements, target animal batch safety testing of veterinary vaccines is authorised under the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986 in project licences covering a range of safety tests, rather than on a product by product basis.

The obligation on a project licence holder to seek a waiver to the requirement for such tests would be triggered by project licence standard condition 6 which requires that the minimum number of animals of the lowest degree of neurophysiological sensitivity is used in procedures causing the least pain, suffering, distress or lasting harm.

The role of the Animal (Scientific Procedures) Inspectorate, which is aware of the technical requirements, is to advise on whether and under what terms proposals for animal use should be authorised and to inspect to ensure compliance with the terms and conditions of the relevant project licence.