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FASEB Responds to NIH Request for Information on Novel Alternative Methods

Tuesday, August 1, 2023
On August 1, FASEB submitted comments to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in response to a Request for Information (RFI) on Novel Alternative Methods (NAMs). The RFI comments will help inform the NIH Advisory Committee to the Director Working Group on "Catalyzing the Development and Use of NAMs" and establish final recommendations in December. 

Given that NAMs are in the early stages of development, FASEB's comment emphasizes that animal research remains the premier method for numerous areas of science. NAMs are useful tools to supplement this work, though many gaps and challenges exist. 

To address these challenges, FASEB identified three key themes throughout its comments:
  1. The need for uniform validation guidelines and parallel investments in validation studies to ensure new technologies are well-characterized with clear endpoints and metrics.
  2. The need for NAM-specific reporting and data-sharing guidelines that acknowledge the rigor, reproducibility, and translatability challenges inherent to nonanimal models.
  3. The importance of strengthening partnerships and collaborations between federal agencies, industry, scientific societies, and animal researchers to minimize administrative burden and ensure equitable implementation.