In 2014, The Institute of Cancer Research signed the Concordat on Openness on Animal Research, developed with organisations across the biomedical research sector, and committed to be more open about the use of animals in research.
The Concordat sets out how signatory organisations will ensure members of the public have access to accurate information about how animals are used in their research and the role of animal research generally in science and medicine.
The ICR played an active role in developing the Concordat and strongly welcomes its aims to improve communication about animal research.
You can read more about our commitment to openness in this blog post from Professor Paul Workman, Professor of Pharmacology and Therapeutics at the ICR, outlining why we are committed to greater transparency about use of animals in research, and explaining why the responsible use of animals is essential.
We have gone beyond the requirements of the Concordat in helping drive best practice in open communication about our research using animals.
In 2014, an episode of Panorama focusing entirely on the pioneering work of the ICR and The Royal Marsden aired on BBC One. The Panorama team was given unprecedented access to ongoing research at the ICR and The Royal Marsden, including our studies using animals. The documentary showed how we are trialling potential new ALK-targeting drugs in mice before aiming to take the most promising candidates to children in clinical trials.
It also followed our work using mouse avatars where a sample of a patient’s cancer is implanted into a mouse to seed the formation of a tumour, allowing researchers to test for mutations that may make the patient’s cancer susceptible to specific drug treatments.