SBN Public Positions

Policy on the Use of Animals in Behavioral Neuroendocrine Research

The Society for Behavioral Neuroendocrinology, as a professional society for basic and clinical researchers in neuroscience, endorses and supports the appropriate and responsible use of animals as experimental subjects. Knowledge generated by neuroscience research on animals has led to important advances in the understanding of diseases and disorders that affect the nervous system and in the development of better treatments that reduce suffering in humans and animals. This knowledge also makes a critical contribution to our understanding of ourselves as a unique and uniquely complex. An added benefit from these studies has been to highlight that the animals themselves are interesting and complex on their own right and well deserving of our study. Continued progress in understanding how the brain works and further advances in treating and curing disorders of the nervous system require investigation of complex functions at all levels in the living nervous system. Such treatments are used often then to care for animals as well. Research must be done on animal subjects only when no adequate alternative exists. The Society takes the position that scientists have an obligation to contribute to this progress through responsible and humane research on animals.

The U.S. Public Health Service's Policy on Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals (PHS policy) and the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals (the Guide) describe general policies and procedures designed to ensure the humane and appropriate use of live vertebrate animals in all forms of biomedical research. The Society finds the policies and procedures set forth in the PHS policy and the Guide to be both necessary and sufficient to ensure a high standard of animal care and use. All Society members are expected to conduct their animal research in compliance with this policy. Members are required to verify that they have done so when submitting abstracts for presentation at the Annual Meeting or manuscripts for publication in Hormones and Behavior.