30 May 2019
Korea’s first-ever public forum to discuss replacing animal use in science will be hosted in Seoul at the National Assembly on May 30. Organized by Humane Society International (HSI) and Korean lawyers’ group People for Non-Human Rights (PNR), the forum is co-hosted by members of National Assembly – In-soon Nam, Kyungmi Park, Wanju Park, Seong-gon Wi, Sangmin Lee and the Assembly’s 4th Industrial Revolution Forum.
Newly proposed legislation prepared by HSI and PNR focuses on establishing an inter-ministerial entity to promote non-animal approaches in the toxicological and biomedical fields. Currently, the support of alternative research is limited to the Korea Center for Validation of Alternative Methods (KoCVAM), while the majority of animal research is funded by other ministries across multiple sectors. While these ministries support small-scale research projects on testing alternatives, there is no platform for exchanging research information or for providing major funding for programs that promote non-animal approaches. This forum will discuss collaborative support for adopting 21st-century approaches in scientific research and development without animal suffering.
Speakers include Taesung Kim (KoCVAM), Warren Casey (NIH/NIEHS), Troy Seidle (HSI), and Dan Dongeun Huh (University of Pennsylvania). Panelists include officials from the Ministries of Science, Industry, Health and Welfare, Food and Drug Safety, and Agriculture and Rural Affairs.
HSI Senior Policy Manager Borami Seo said, “Most of the ministries support research and development involving animal testing. As the use of lab animals increases every year, authorities are not taking any actions to move away from outdated animal testing and to support non-animal approaches that are better predictors for human health. It’s time for these ministries and other stakeholders to come together to find a way to encourage scientific and ethically responsible human-relevant approaches.”
PNR co-founder, Coochwa Suh said, “Existing legislation is very limited in its ability to reduce animal use and to promote proactive support to develop alternatives to animal testing. Our proposed legislation will provide a platform for collaboration on better science for both humans and animals.”
The forum was held at 9.30am on May 30th at the National Assembly.
Media contact: Borami Seo firstname.lastname@example.org