Reports: refinement of severe procedures

Document icon

These reports address specific welfare issues related to models and procedures that have the potential to cause severe suffering. They are the output of expert working groups comprised of academic and industry researchers, animal technologists, veterinarians and welfare scientists.

To date four RSPCA groups have been formed with further groups to be established. If you would like more information about these or future groups please contact

Avoiding mortality

Hawkins et al. (2019). 'Avoiding mortality in animal research and testing'. ISBN: 978-0-901098-17-7

Cardiovascular research

Emerson (2010). 'Refinement, reduction and replacement approaches to in vivo cardiovascular research'. British Journal of Pharmacology, 161, 749-754.

Experimental Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis (EAE)

Wolfensohn et al. (2013). 'Reducing suffering in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE)'. Journal of Pharmacological & Toxicological Methods, 67, 169-176.

Neuropathic pain

Percie du Sert & Rice (2014). 'Improving the translation of analgesic drugs to the clinic: animal models of neuropathic pain'. British Journal of Pharmacology, 161, 749-754.

Rheumatoid arthritis

Hawkins et al. (2015). 'Applying refinement to the use of mice and rats in rheumatoid arthritis research'. Inflammopharmacology, 23, 131-150.

Seizures, convulsions and epilepsy

Lidster et al (2016). 'Opportunities for improving animal welfare in rodent models of epilepsy and seizures'. Journal of Neuroscience Methods, 260, 2-25.

Modebadze et al (2016). 'A Low Mortality, High Morbidity Reduced Intensity Status Epilepticus (RISE) Model of Epilepsy and Epileptogenesis in the Rat'. PLoS ONE 11(2): e0147265. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0147265.

Wolfensohn et al. (2013). 'Reducing suffering in animal models and procedures involving seizures, convulsions and epilepsy'. Journal of Pharmacological & Toxicological Methods, 67, 9-15.


Lilley et al. (2015). 'Refinement of animal models of sepsis and septic shock'. Shock, 43, 304-316.

Vaccine potency

Hendriksen (2009). 'Replacement, reduction and refinement alternatives to animal use in vaccine potency measurement'. Expert Review of Vaccines, 8, 313-322