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Parliamentary questions
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18 January 2019
E-000243-19
Question for written answer E-000243-19
to the Commission
Rule 130
Sirpa Pietikäinen (PPE)

 Subject:  Reviews to replace the use of primates in neurosciences
 Answer in writing 

In its declaration of 25 September 2007 on the use of primates in scientific experiments, Parliament asked the Commission to ‘establish a timetable for replacing the use of all primates in scientific experiments with alternatives’.(1)

Article 58 of Directive 2010/63/EU on the protection of animals used for scientific purposes states that ‘the Commission shall, where appropriate, and in consultation with the Member States and stakeholders, conduct periodic thematic reviews of the replacement, reduction and refinement of the use of animals in procedures, paying specific attention to non-human primates, technological developments, and new scientific and animal-welfare knowledge.’(2)

Primates are highly social and sensitive animals which suffer severely when used in research, particularly in basic neurosciences.(3) Over 6 000 primates are used in experiments across the EU every year, for more than 10 000 procedures. Approximately 600 are used in basic research.(4)

Could the Commission clarify what kind of measures are being taken to ensure that Article 58 of Directive 2010/63/EU is adequately applied in order to address the urgent need to phase out the use of non-human primates in the field of neurosciences?

(1)Texts adopted, P6_TA(2007)0407
(2)https://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2010:276:0033:0079:en:PDF
(3)https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3121557/, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3566480/, https://www.jstage.jst.go.jp/article/aatex/17/2/17_51/_pdf, http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/ajp.22161/full, https://www.researchgate.net/publication/228667970_Sources_of_stress_in_captivity_Appl_Anim_Behav_Sci, https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/cambridge-quarterly-of-healthcare-ethics/article/animal-minds-and-neuroimaging/F49EEDC1B810000AED1CD227630F517D,
(4)http://ec.europa.eu/environment/chemicals/lab_animals/member_states_stats_reports_en.htm

Last updated: 11 February 2019Legal notice