The use of animals in medical and veterinary research

Research using animals has made an important contribution to advances in medicine and surgery, which have brought major improvements in the health of human beings and animals.

Much basic research on physiological, pathological and therapeutic processes still requires the use of animals in experiments. Such research has provided and continues to provide the essential foundation for improvements in medical and veterinary knowledge, education and practice.

Research using animals will continue to be essential for the conquest of many unsolved medical problems, such as cardiovascular disease, stroke, AIDS, other infectious diseases and cancer; and genetic, developmental, neurological and psychiatric conditions.

Wellcome will support biomedical and veterinary research using animals in the UK providing:

International research supported by Wellcome is expected to be carried out in the spirit of the UK legislation as well as being compliant with all local legislation and ethical review procedures.

We believe that a dialogue on the use of animals in research is healthy and should be supported, and that the research community should explain the methods and aims of its research.

Read more about our policy position on research involving animals.

Percentage of Wellcome-funded projects (1 October 2014–31 September 2015) using animals

Percentage of Wellcome-funded projects (1 October 2014–31 September 2015) using animals

This does not include Medical Humanities and Ethics awards. 

View the data on which species were used in Wellcome-funded projects [PDF 12KB].

More information

Contact us

If you have questions about any of our policies, contact the policy team.