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February 15, 2007

CAAT Launches Public Policy Program

Anonymous Donor Contributes $1.5 million

The Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing (CAAT) has received a $1.5 million, five-year grant from an anonymous donor to develop a new program in public policy, education and outreach. The program is aimed at educating policy makers and legislators about the need for alternatives to the use of animals in toxicity and safety testing and in biomedical research. 
 
CAAT, an academic center within the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, will work with partners in the animal welfare, environmental health and scientific communities to foster a policy and legislative culture that values the lives of animals and promotes the most humane science possible.

 “During the past two decades, changes in science and public expectations have lead us to rethink the ways in which we approach research and testing,” said Alan M. Goldberg, PhD, professor of toxicology at the Bloomberg School and director of CAAT.  “As science evolves, alternative non-animal methods are moving to the front of the line as the chosen tools for toxicologists. It is imperative the policy makers understand these exciting developments.”

CAAT follows a philosophy known as the 3Rs of alternatives—replacement, reduction and refinement. This means finding new ways to replace animals with non-animal methods, reduce the numbers of animals necessary and refine methods to minimize pain or distress for the animals involved.

The Center has a 25-year history in promoting the 3Rs and is known internationally as an organization that can effectively translate and explain scientific information on alternatives, making it accessible to leaders in the policy arena. 

“We are excited that CAAT continues to be at the forefront of humane science and testing alternatives. This new program extends its track record as a world leader in humane scientific investigation,” said Michael J. Klag, MD, MPH, dean of the Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Paul Locke, JD, DrPH, an associate professor at the Bloomberg School's Department of Environmental Health Sciences, will direct this effort. Dr. Locke is a public health scientist and attorney with an extensive background in science policy research and analysis. 

CAAT is housed in the School’s Department of Environmental Health Sciences. Additional information is available through the Center’s website at http://caat.jhsph.edu.

Media contact for the Johns Hopkins Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing: Carol Howard 410-223-1643 or choward@jhsph.edu.
Public Affairs media contact for the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health: Tim Parsons at 410-955-6878 or paffairs@jhsph.edu.