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Animal Research

The London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine is a world-leader in the field of infectious disease, with scientists working on vaccines, treatments and cures.

Mouse in hand To understand the basic biology and progression of diseases such as malaria and tuberculosis, which kill millions of people every year, and to design new strategies for their prevention and treatment, research using animals is essential. Most major medical advances have depended in part on the use of animals in research.

The majority of research at the School does not involve animals. By law, animals may only be used if no other non-sentient alternative is available.

In the small proportion of cases where researchers work with animals within our specialist research facility, small laboratory rodents – mostly mice – are the only animals used.

Best practice

All our researchers follow internationally accredited guidelines for best practice and their work is underpinned by the 3Rs principles:


Animal research in the UK is strictly regulated by law and all research is overseen by the School’s Animal Welfare and Ethical Review Board.

The School holds a Home Office Establishment Licence for animal research, all individual researchers working with animals hold separate Project and/or Personal Licences, and staff receive regular training.


The welfare of animals used for biomedical research at the School is of the highest priority.  The welfare of our animals is the responsibility of an integrated team of animal technicians, scientists and veterinarians.

We aim to be open about our research involving animals. Read our policy statement (PDF).


The School, together with more than 70 other leading research institutes and funding agencies in the UK, is a signatory to the Concordat on Openness on Animal Research. An important objective of our research is the publication of statistically valid data of the highest scientific merit and importance in publicly available, peer reviewed journals.

More information on alternatives to animal research can be found on the Fund for the Replacement of Animals in Medical Experiments (FRAME) website

Image: White mice in purple gloved hands. Credit: Understanding Animal Research

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