The role of the AWERB

The Home Office must ensure that each breeding, supplying and user establishment has an Animal Welfare and Ethical Review Body (AWERB) in place.

Animal Welfare and Ethical Review Body

The AWERB must:

  • Advise staff dealing with animals in the licensed establishment on matters related to the animal welfare, their acquisition, accommodation, care and use.
  • Advise on the application of the Replacement, Refinement and Reduction (3Rs) and relevant technical and scientific developments.
  • Establish and review of management and operational processes for the monitoring and reporting in relation to the welfare of animals that are housed and used in the licensed establishment.
  • Follow the development and outcome of projects carried out in the establishment, taking into account the effect on animals used; and to identify and advise licence holders on elements that could further contribute to the 3Rs.
  • Advise on rehoming schemes, including the appropriate socialisation of the animals to be re-homed.
  • Widen its membership in order to take into account the views of lay people – who may be independent of the University - who have no personal responsibilities or other involvement in the laboratory use of animals.  The Role of the Lay Member

AWERB will critically assess Project Licence Applications and amendments considering many different areas such as; the scientific benefit of the work weighed against the cost to the animals involved, the application of the 3Rs in the proposed work and also the facilities and competencies that are available at the establishment. The University of Leicester AWERB also perform mid-term and retrospective reviews on studies and projects that have been conducted ensuring that best practice in relation to the 3Rs is communicated widely within the University.

AWERB will provide constructive feedback to the applicant along with appropriate recommendations regarding the programme of work. Any comments addressed to the applicant, requests for further clarification or scientific rationale must be addressed by the applicant before the application will be approved by AWERB.

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