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Hope for non-animal testing

Skin model proves a successful testing method

Researchers have found that a model replicating the traits of human skin could provide a replacement for animals in future clinical research.

A study taking place at the Flemish Institute for Technological Research (VITO) in Belgium, found that a skin sensitisation assay can successfully identify chemicals causing human allergic responses.

The research team used a three-dimensional, human-derived skin model, which replicates key traits of normal human skin.

This could replace the use of guinea pigs or mice, which are injected with or have substances applied to their skin to determine allergic reactions.

Researchers found that the model accurately predicated each chemical's ability to cause an allergic response for all of the compounds tested.

These findings support those reported by Michigan-based research organisation, CeeTox, who created the skin sensitisation assay.

Further validation studies will be carried out, and the results are to be submitted to the European Centre for the Validation of Alternative Methods, which officially approves the methods of chemical testing required by law.

The announcement follows a recent ban in Europe on the sale of cosmetics that have been tested on animals.

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Kennel Club appoints new chief executive

News Story 1
 The Kennel Club has announced the appointment of Mark Beazley, who was previously Cats Protection's director of operations, as chief executive. Mark replaces Rosemary Smart, who stepped down from the role in April after 18 years.

Mark has held several senior strategic and executive roles, including executive director at Dogs Trust Ireland and chair of the Companion Animal Working Group at Eurogroup for Animals. He was also heavily involved in the establishment of the Eu Cat and Dog Alliance.

Mark will take up his new role in October. 

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International Cat Care appoints new head of veterinary division

International Cat Care (ICC) has announced the appointment of Nathalie Dowgray as head of the charity's veterinary division.

Nathalie, who is an RCVS advanced practitioner in feline medicine, will lead the International Society of Feline Medicine (ISFM) and a play key role in advancing knowledge and research in feline medicine.

Claire Bessant, iCatCare's chief executive said: "We're absolutely delighted to be welcoming Nathalie to the charity. She brings a depth and breadth of feline expertise and understanding which fits perfectly with the charity's work and development, and her enthusiasm for cats is infectious."