FRAME, a medical research charity committed to reducing the number of animals used in scientific testing, has undergone a major rebranding to keep pace with changing technologies and to ensure its work into scientifically-viable, alternative non-animal methods can continue.
The Fund for the Replacement of Animals in Medical Experiments (FRAME) was founded in London in 1969 by Dorothy Hegarty. Its main aim has always been to promote the Three Rs (Replacement, Reduction & Refinement) as a way forward for reducing animal experimentation.
This approach focuses on minimising the number of animals used in biomedical research, by replacing experimentation using animals with scientifically proven alternatives that do not, and by refining existing practices to minimise the impact of particular procedures and practises on animals, where they still have to be used.
FRAME’s ultimate aim is the elimination of the need to use laboratory animals in any kind of medical or scientific procedures.
While the charity has gone through an extensive facelift and is sporting a new image, its vision and values are unchanged. Through its own laboratory and desk-based research, FRAME is continually investigating and developing new methods at the forefront of science, and demonstrating and promoting scientific excellence to develop new and alternative methods that are scientifically robust and reliable.
Dr Anna Cadogan, chair of trustees at FRAME, said: “FRAME has been dedicated to developing relevant and reliable alternatives to animal testing in medical experiments for almost 50 years. Yet we have always had the same branding and we have never shouted loudly enough about what we do.
“All this is about to change, as we use our rebrand as a means of reaching out to and engaging with a wider audience in the scientific community, and the general public to generate much needed financial support to enable us to continue our work.
“Even though we have a new, refreshed identity, what we stand for remains the same. The rebrand is more about the need for our organisation to change with the times so it is something people feel able to engage with and support.
“We have also launched a new website, ensuring FRAME is communicating a consistent message across all media, as well as investing in marketing and appointing a Scientific Liaison Officer. This will help us keep close to our corporate supporters, as well as engaging with others interested in reducing the number of animals used in scientific and medical testing.”
FRAME promotes the elimination of the need to use laboratory animals through various activities including campaigning, publication of a scientific journal (ATLA), office-based and laboratory research and through its educational work.
The charity works closely with its corporate supporters and hopes to attract new ones in the coming months, to support the development of FRAME and new techniques in collaboration with them.
Dr Cadogan added: “We collaborate with industry and academia to allow us to share and access new knowledge and expertise. This sharing is crucial for discovering, developing and refining alternatives – and for promoting scientific excellence for ultimate patient benefit.”
FRAME undertook the relaunch to build on its achievements over the past five decades.
Notable events have occurred throughout its history and include:
- FRAME advised the UK Government on the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act, which came into force in 1986.
- In 2000, EU regulators accepted FRAME’s first three replacement alternatives to animal testing, based on the three ‘R’s.
- In 2010 FRAME took part in the European Commission Consultation on Alternative (Non-animal) Methods for Cosmetics Testing.