Long-Fought Compromise Reached On European Animal Rules

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Science  24 Sep 2010:
Vol. 329, Issue 5999, pp. 1588-1589
DOI: 10.1126/science.329.5999.1588

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After a decade-long tug of war over new rules governing animal experiments in the European Union, both research and animal-welfare advocates say they can live with the final legislation approved this month. Following a flurry of intense lobbying from all sides, the European Parliament gave its final approval on 8 September to a new directive spelling out rules governing animal research in academic and industrial labs. As with most E.U. legislation, however, the directive will take effect through laws enacted by each member country. And that, say observers and animal-rights activists, will determine how much the directive will improve animal welfare and change the way researchers work with animals.