"We still need animal research"

"We still need animal research"

Max Planck researchers and animal care takers explain why animal research is still indispensable for basic research

In Germany and other European countries, there is a recurring discussion about animal research and the possibility of a transition to animal-free innovations. In the Netherlands, there has been an extensive discussion about phasing out animal procedures and stimulating innovation without laboratory animals. However, advances on alternative methods have not progressed enough for a complete phasing-out. Max Planck researchers and animal care takers view their work with animals in research as a privilege, not an automatic right. Here they explain for which type of issues they still need animal research.

"Macaques are real personalities. That's why it is important that researchers build a good relationship with them. We pay attention to this from the beginning and support humans and animals in becoming a good team." Franziska Kaiser, animal keeper at the Ernst Strüngmann Institute in Frankfurt
"Macaques are real personalities. That's why it is important that researchers build a good relationship with them. We pay attention to this from the beginning and support humans and animals in becoming a good team."
Franziska Kaiser, animal keeper at the Ernst Strüngmann Institute in Frankfurt
"For our animals to do well, it is not enough to give them food and keep the cages clean. That's why we spend a lot of time with them and make sure they don't get bored." Tim Eifried, animal keeper at the Ernst Strüngmann Institute in Frankfurt
"For our animals to do well, it is not enough to give them food and keep the cages clean. That's why we spend a lot of time with them and make sure they don't get bored."
Tim Eifried, animal keeper at the Ernst Strüngmann Institute in Frankfurt
"Deforestation and climate change result in ever closer contact between humans and animals. We therefore need to explore human-animal interactions and communication."Jovana Maksic, PhD student at the Ernst Strüngmann Institute in Frankfurt
"Deforestation and climate change result in ever closer contact between humans and animals. We therefore need to explore human-animal interactions and communication."
Jovana Maksic, PhD student at the Ernst Strüngmann Institute in Frankfurt
"Animal experiments combined with computer models are at the core of good theories that serve basic biology and applied medicine. We use computer models to refine the choice of experimental approaches. We are an important cooperation partner of the 3R Center Giessen. In doing so, we implement the 3R concept (Replace, Reduce, Refine) sustainably and thus reduce the number of experimental animals." Hermann Cuntz, research group leader at the Ernst Strüngmann Institute in Frankfurt
"Animal experiments combined with computer models are at the core of good theories that serve basic biology and applied medicine. We use computer models to refine the choice of experimental approaches. We are an important cooperation partner of the 3R Center Giessen. In doing so, we implement the 3R concept (Replace, Reduce, Refine) sustainably and thus reduce the number of experimental animals."
Hermann Cuntz, research group leader at the Ernst Strüngmann Institute in Frankfurt
"We know all our mice 'personally'. Each mouse has individual preferences: Some like challenges, others don't. There are clear fans of raisins or muesli, and almost all of them love Nutella. In our virtual reality tasks, the mice really learn along with us - happier mice are smarter mice!" Martha Nari Havenith, research group leader at the Ernst Strüngmann Institute in Frankfurt
"We know all our mice 'personally'. Each mouse has individual preferences: Some like challenges, others don't. There are clear fans of raisins or muesli, and almost all of them love Nutella. In our virtual reality tasks, the mice really learn along with us - happier mice are smarter mice!"
Martha Nari Havenith, research group leader at the Ernst Strüngmann Institute in Frankfurt
"For the treatment of neurological and psychiatric diseases such as schizophrenia, autism or epilepsy, we need to understand how a healthy brain works. Since we can only study the structure and function of human brains to a limited extent, studies on animal nervous systems will remain indispensable for the foreseeable future." Wolf Singer, research group leader at the Ernst Strüngmann Institute in Frankfurt
"For the treatment of neurological and psychiatric diseases such as schizophrenia, autism or epilepsy, we need to understand how a healthy brain works. Since we can only study the structure and function of human brains to a limited extent, studies on animal nervous systems will remain indispensable for the foreseeable future."
Wolf Singer, research group leader at the Ernst Strüngmann Institute in Frankfurt
"Animal studies are the only way to observe the working brain at the neuronal level. I am grateful to the animals that allow me to gather this priceless knowledge. They are wonderful creatures and I am committed to treating them responsibly and lovingly."Jean Laurens, research group leader at the Ernst Strüngmann Institute in Frankfurt
"Animal studies are the only way to observe the working brain at the neuronal level. I am grateful to the animals that allow me to gather this priceless knowledge. They are wonderful creatures and I am committed to treating them responsibly and lovingly."
Jean Laurens, research group leader at the Ernst Strüngmann Institute in Frankfurt
"To cure a diseased brain, we need to understand its intact state. For this, we need insights that healthy human test subjects cannot provide us. In my attempt to understand the basic principles of the brain, my animals are my most important helpers, valued and very well cared for." Frederike Klein, PhD student at the Ernst Strüngmann Institute in Frankfurt
"To cure a diseased brain, we need to understand its intact state. For this, we need insights that healthy human test subjects cannot provide us. In my attempt to understand the basic principles of the brain, my animals are my most important helpers, valued and very well cared for."
Frederike Klein, PhD student at the Ernst Strüngmann Institute in Frankfurt
"The Covid 19 pandemic has shown that animal research is still essential for basic and clinical research. Without it, vaccine development would have been completely unthinkable in just one year." Alf Theisen, director of the animal facility at the Ernst Strüngmann Institute in Frankfur
"The Covid 19 pandemic has shown that animal research is still essential for basic and clinical research. Without it, vaccine development would have been completely unthinkable in just one year."
Alf Theisen, director of the animal facility at the Ernst Strüngmann Institute in Frankfur
"We look forward to seeing our animals every day. Some of them are already waiting for us impatiently and are looking forward to seeing us. The feedback from our animals is daily confirmation of our care and efforts. I enjoy being able to take time for individual animals." Mona Stauf, animal keeper at the caesar Research Center in Bonn
"We look forward to seeing our animals every day. Some of them are already waiting for us impatiently and are looking forward to seeing us. The feedback from our animals is daily confirmation of our care and efforts. I enjoy being able to take time for individual animals."
Mona Stauf, animal keeper at the caesar Research Center in Bonn
"We place great importance on ensuring that our laboratory animals are healthy and able to behave normally so that our scientists can conduct meaningful experiments that advance science." Sandra Raatz, animal keeper at the caesar Research Center in Bonn
"We place great importance on ensuring that our laboratory animals are healthy and able to behave normally so that our scientists can conduct meaningful experiments that advance science."
Sandra Raatz, animal keeper at the caesar Research Center in Bonn
"Unfortunately, we cannot yet completely replace animal research. But it can also benefit animal welfare. For example, we need experiments with animals to develop new treatments in veterinary medicine and to train veterinarians. Another example is the tracking birds to study their migratory behavior and elucidate the decline of many migratory birds." Andreas Lengeling, representative for animal experiments in basic research at the Max Planck Society
"Unfortunately, we cannot yet completely replace animal research. But it can also benefit animal welfare. For example, we need experiments with animals to develop new treatments in veterinary medicine and to train veterinarians. Another example is the tracking birds to study their migratory behavior and elucidate the decline of many migratory birds."
Andreas Lengeling, representative for animal experiments in basic research at the Max Planck Society
"In recent years, scientists have developed increasingly sophisticated technologies that allow them to study neuronal activity without disturbing an animal's natural behavior. For example, our lab has developed a microscope that allows us to record neuronal activity in the brains of zebrafish without surgical intervention while the animals swim around in a semi-natural environment." Jennifer Li and Drew Robson, research group leaders at the Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics in Tübingen
"In recent years, scientists have developed increasingly sophisticated technologies that allow them to study neuronal activity without disturbing an animal's natural behavior. For example, our lab has developed a microscope that allows us to record neuronal activity in the brains of zebrafish without surgical intervention while the animals swim around in a semi-natural environment."
Jennifer Li and Drew Robson, research group leaders at the Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics in Tübingen
"In Alzheimer's or Parkinson's disease, nerve cells die because certain proteins clump together. We are developing potential active substances and testing them on mice to see if they slow down the death of the nerve cells. This could lead to new forms of therapy." Christian Griesinger, director at the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in Göttingen
"In Alzheimer's or Parkinson's disease, nerve cells die because certain proteins clump together. We are developing potential active substances and testing them on mice to see if they slow down the death of the nerve cells. This could lead to new forms of therapy."
Christian Griesinger, director at the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in Göttingen
"We want to find out why some animal species can regenerate body parts, while we humans cannot. Flatworms are an ideal model for us because this group of animals includes species with as well as without the ability to regenerate." Jochen Rink, director at the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in Göttingen
"We want to find out why some animal species can regenerate body parts, while we humans cannot. Flatworms are an ideal model for us because this group of animals includes species with as well as without the ability to regenerate."
Jochen Rink, director at the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in Göttingen
""Applying must be preceded by knowing." This quote by Max Planck expresses that we must first understand the processes in nature in order to find solutions to problems. The animals themselves help us to better understand complex relationships in order to develop new methods for medicine as well as for animal and nature conservation." Christine Pfeifle, head of Mouse Management at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Plön
""Applying must be preceded by knowing." This quote by Max Planck expresses that we must first understand the processes in nature in order to find solutions to problems. The animals themselves help us to better understand complex relationships in order to develop new methods for medicine as well as for animal and nature conservation."
Christine Pfeifle, head of Mouse Management at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Plön
"We want to know how animals adapt to their environment and how they find their mates. We will only succeed if we study animals holistically." Diethard Tautz, director at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Plön
"We want to know how animals adapt to their environment and how they find their mates. We will only succeed if we study animals holistically."
Diethard Tautz, director at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Plön
"Researchers around the world often work together in networks. This can make an important contribution to reducing the number of animals used in experiments, as many "puzzle pieces" can be put together in a lively exchange even without further animal testing. Ideally, the findings can be applied and transferred to many areas."  Heike Harre, biology lab technician at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Plön
"Researchers around the world often work together in networks. This can make an important contribution to reducing the number of animals used in experiments, as many "puzzle pieces" can be put together in a lively exchange even without further animal testing. Ideally, the findings can be applied and transferred to many areas."
Heike Harre, biology lab technician at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Plön
"It has only been known for a few years that the microorganisms that our bodies harbor are involved in the development of diseases as diverse as cardiovascular and autoimmune diseases and cancer. The importance of the so-called microbiome would have remained undiscovered without experiments with animals." John Baines, guest group leader at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Plön
"It has only been known for a few years that the microorganisms that our bodies harbor are involved in the development of diseases as diverse as cardiovascular and autoimmune diseases and cancer. The importance of the so-called microbiome would have remained undiscovered without experiments with animals."
John Baines, guest group leader at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Plön
"Defects during the formation of eggs or sperm are the main causes of pregnancy loss in humans and animals. What causes these defects is still largely unknown today. For ethical reasons, we can only perform the crossbreeding experiments necessary to study them with animals." Linda Odenthal-Hesse, research group leader at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Plön
"Defects during the formation of eggs or sperm are the main causes of pregnancy loss in humans and animals. What causes these defects is still largely unknown today. For ethical reasons, we can only perform the crossbreeding experiments necessary to study them with animals."
Linda Odenthal-Hesse, research group leader at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Plön
"With our research in animals, we want to identify factors that contribute to complex diseases and develop therapies that are individually tailored to patients. For example, we want to use germ-free mice to predict how well a patient with inflammatory bowel disease will respond to different therapies before treatment." Nadia Andrea Andreani, scientist at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Plön
"With our research in animals, we want to identify factors that contribute to complex diseases and develop therapies that are individually tailored to patients. For example, we want to use germ-free mice to predict how well a patient with inflammatory bowel disease will respond to different therapies before treatment."
Nadia Andrea Andreani, scientist at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Plön
"The physiological processes and behavioral responses of an organism are subject to internal and external influences. The interaction of all these factors is extremely complex. In some cases, therefore, there is currently no alternative to studying animals. In other cases, alternative methods can reduce the number of necessary animal experiments." Sven Künzel, scientist at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Plön
"The physiological processes and behavioral responses of an organism are subject to internal and external influences. The interaction of all these factors is extremely complex. In some cases, therefore, there is currently no alternative to studying animals. In other cases, alternative methods can reduce the number of necessary animal experiments."
Sven Künzel, scientist at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Plön
The human brain, a result of biological evolution, may be the most complex structure in the universe. Understanding its workings is one of the greatest challenges facing science. Computer simulations alone will not suffice: we need experiments." Gilles Laurent, director at the Max Planck Institute for Brain Research in Frankfurt
The human brain, a result of biological evolution, may be the most complex structure in the universe. Understanding its workings is one of the greatest challenges facing science. Computer simulations alone will not suffice: we need experiments."
Gilles Laurent, director at the Max Planck Institute for Brain Research in Frankfurt
"Many proteins in humans and flies share similar characteristics. Recently, we found that a mutation in a protein we work on in the fly is responsible for causing a neurodevelopmental disorder in humans. From our research in fruit flies, we were able to deduce how reducing the amount of this protein could harm patients." Asifa Akhtar, director at the Max Planck Institute of Immunobiology and Epigenetics in Freiburg, Germany, and vice president of the Max Planck Society
"Many proteins in humans and flies share similar characteristics. Recently, we found that a mutation in a protein we work on in the fly is responsible for causing a neurodevelopmental disorder in humans. From our research in fruit flies, we were able to deduce how reducing the amount of this protein could harm patients."
Asifa Akhtar, director at the Max Planck Institute of Immunobiology and Epigenetics in Freiburg, Germany, and vice president of the Max Planck Society
"An immune response consists of the concerted action of dozens of different cell types. To study how it unfolds and how we can unleash it against infections and cancer, we need animal studies. But we continue to reduce their numbers. Thanks to more sensitive equipment and refined experimental techniques, we need fewer individuals for an experiment and don't stress the animals as much." Matteo Villa, scientist at the Max Planck Institute of Immunobiology and Epigenetics in Freiburg
"An immune response consists of the concerted action of dozens of different cell types. To study how it unfolds and how we can unleash it against infections and cancer, we need animal studies. But we continue to reduce their numbers. Thanks to more sensitive equipment and refined experimental techniques, we need fewer individuals for an experiment and don't stress the animals as much."
Matteo Villa, scientist at the Max Planck Institute of Immunobiology and Epigenetics in Freiburg
"I want to better understand diseases and develop new treatments for cancer patients. When I start a new project, I first test my hypotheses using cell cultures, and only then in a living organism. Carefully conducted animal studies are the crucial and indispensable link between science in the lab and a new treatment approach in the clinic." Petya Apostolova, physician and scientist at the Max Planck Institute of Immunobiology and Epigenetics in Freiburg
"I want to better understand diseases and develop new treatments for cancer patients. When I start a new project, I first test my hypotheses using cell cultures, and only then in a living organism. Carefully conducted animal studies are the crucial and indispensable link between science in the lab and a new treatment approach in the clinic."
Petya Apostolova, physician and scientist at the Max Planck Institute of Immunobiology and Epigenetics in Freiburg
"While many of the basic principles of epigenetics can be analyzed in tissue cultures, the importance of epigenetic control for embryonic development, adaptation to a changing environment, and epigenetic inheritance need to be explored in whole organisms. For this, we use the mouse and fly model systems." Thomas Jenuwein, director at the Max Planck Institute of Immunobiology and Epigenetics in Freiburg
"While many of the basic principles of epigenetics can be analyzed in tissue cultures, the importance of epigenetic control for embryonic development, adaptation to a changing environment, and epigenetic inheritance need to be explored in whole organisms. For this, we use the mouse and fly model systems."
Thomas Jenuwein, director at the Max Planck Institute of Immunobiology and Epigenetics in Freiburg
"For the development of vaccines and treatments for infectious diseases and immune disorders, we need to understand how the immune system works. Immune responses depend on the coordinated interaction of many types of immune cells in an organism. Studying genetically modified mice is therefore essential for us to better understand immune responses in complex tissues and and mimic aspects of it in cell cultures." Tim Lämmermann, research group leader at the Max Planck Institute of Immunobiology and Epigenetics in Freiburg
"For the development of vaccines and treatments for infectious diseases and immune disorders, we need to understand how the immune system works. Immune responses depend on the coordinated interaction of many types of immune cells in an organism. Studying genetically modified mice is therefore essential for us to better understand immune responses in complex tissues and and mimic aspects of it in cell cultures."
Tim Lämmermann, research group leader at the Max Planck Institute of Immunobiology and Epigenetics in Freiburg
"My team and I are studying the systemic complications of malaria. We combine experiments in mice and analysis of samples from human patients. The approaches complement each other, but cannot replace each other." Arturo Zychlinsky, director at the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology in Berlin
"My team and I are studying the systemic complications of malaria. We combine experiments in mice and analysis of samples from human patients. The approaches complement each other, but cannot replace each other."
Arturo Zychlinsky, director at the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology in Berlin
"My team researches tuberculosis, a disease that affects multiple organs and triggers complicated immune responses that cannot be replicated in cell or organ-like cultures. Using zebrafish as a model of tuberculosis infection, we have gained new insights into tuberculosis in humans that are being used to identify new therapeutic approaches." Mark Cronan, research group leader at the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology in Berlin
"My team researches tuberculosis, a disease that affects multiple organs and triggers complicated immune responses that cannot be replicated in cell or organ-like cultures. Using zebrafish as a model of tuberculosis infection, we have gained new insights into tuberculosis in humans that are being used to identify new therapeutic approaches."
Mark Cronan, research group leader at the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology in Berlin
"With the development of three-dimensional culture systems, so-called organoids, we can reduce the number of our experimental animals. I am very happy that I can contribute to this reduction with my team. Nevertheless, we still need to test our results on animals or possibly on humans, because even the organoids cannot replace a complete organism." Anne Grapin-Botton, director at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden
"With the development of three-dimensional culture systems, so-called organoids, we can reduce the number of our experimental animals. I am very happy that I can contribute to this reduction with my team. Nevertheless, we still need to test our results on animals or possibly on humans, because even the organoids cannot replace a complete organism."
Anne Grapin-Botton, director at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden
"While some aspects of regeneration can be studied ex vivo, there is not yet an in vitro system that can give us a comprehensive understanding of the mechanisms of tissue regeneration in the context of the whole organism. So, we still need studies in animals if we want to figure out how tissue renews in vivo." Meritxell Huch, Lise Meitner Max Planck research group leader at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden
"While some aspects of regeneration can be studied ex vivo, there is not yet an in vitro system that can give us a comprehensive understanding of the mechanisms of tissue regeneration in the context of the whole organism. So, we still need studies in animals if we want to figure out how tissue renews in vivo."
Meritxell Huch, Lise Meitner Max Planck research group leader at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden
"For me as a physician and doctor, it is completely incomprehensible how anyone can call for animal research to be abandoned. Animal experiments are absolutely indispensable if one wants to develop effective therapies for human diseases. Not only are experiments on mice necessary for this, but experiments on non-human primates in particular must increasingly be carried out for this purpose." Wieland B. Huttner, director emeritus at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden
"For me as a physician and doctor, it is completely incomprehensible how anyone can call for animal research to be abandoned. Animal experiments are absolutely indispensable if one wants to develop effective therapies for human diseases. Not only are experiments on mice necessary for this, but experiments on non-human primates in particular must increasingly be carried out for this purpose."
Wieland B. Huttner, director emeritus at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden
"Despite all efforts to develop fully synthetic antibodies, an animal's immune system still provides us with higher quality antibodies. Therefore, I still consider animal immunizations to be indispensable at this point in time." Patrick Keller, head of the Antibody Service at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden
"Despite all efforts to develop fully synthetic antibodies, an animal's immune system still provides us with higher quality antibodies. Therefore, I still consider animal immunizations to be indispensable at this point in time."
Patrick Keller, head of the Antibody Service at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden
"Because organ development and regeneration are so complex, we can't yet study them outside of living organisms." Rita Mateus, research group leader at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics
"Because organ development and regeneration are so complex, we can't yet study them outside of living organisms."
Rita Mateus, research group leader at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics
"I develop model organisms for research. Whenever we make technical changes, we make sure that we can also reduce the number of animals used in experiments. Our experience shows how efficiently routine and the use of the latest techniques can reduce their numbers. We will continue to work consistently on this." Ronald Naumann, head of the Transgenic Animal Service Group at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden
"I develop model organisms for research. Whenever we make technical changes, we make sure that we can also reduce the number of animals used in experiments. Our experience shows how efficiently routine and the use of the latest techniques can reduce their numbers. We will continue to work consistently on this."
Ronald Naumann, head of the Transgenic Animal Service Group at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden
"We need animal studies to understand how our brain receives and processes external and internal stimuli and makes appropriate decisions. Small mammals like mice in particular help us a lot, because their brains are very similar to those of humans in structure and function." Rüdiger Klein, director at the Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology in Martinsried
"We need animal studies to understand how our brain receives and processes external and internal stimuli and makes appropriate decisions. Small mammals like mice in particular help us a lot, because their brains are very similar to those of humans in structure and function."
Rüdiger Klein, director at the Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology in Martinsried
"Tissues as complex as our skulls form from different materials and different cell types that all have to work together. If we want to penetrate this complexity, we need to study model organisms, for example, skeletal development in mice." Jaqueline Tabler, research group leader at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden, Germany.
"Tissues as complex as our skulls form from different materials and different cell types that all have to work together. If we want to penetrate this complexity, we need to study model organisms, for example, skeletal development in mice."
Jaqueline Tabler, research group leader at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden, Germany.
"Many fundamental mechanisms have been elucidated using cell culture experiments. However, animal experiments are still indispensable to understand how cells function in a tissue or organ, or to develop new therapeutics. To further reduce the number of animal experiments in the future, a careful comparison of both models - cellular and animal - is needed. With this knowledge, we can develop powerful algorithms that make predictions in the animal model, complementing cell culture experiments and reducing the use of animal experiments." Marino Zerial, director at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden
"Many fundamental mechanisms have been elucidated using cell culture experiments. However, animal experiments are still indispensable to understand how cells function in a tissue or organ, or to develop new therapeutics. To further reduce the number of animal experiments in the future, a careful comparison of both models - cellular and animal - is needed. With this knowledge, we can develop powerful algorithms that make predictions in the animal model, complementing cell culture experiments and reducing the use of animal experiments."
Marino Zerial, director at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden
"We want to better understand animal behavior and needs. By observing species both in the lab and in the field, we get an overall picture of what animals do, why they do it and how they do it. The more information we gain about a species, the better we can protect it." Alex Jordan, research group leader at the Max Planck Institute for Behavioral Biology in Constance
"We want to better understand animal behavior and needs. By observing species both in the lab and in the field, we get an overall picture of what animals do, why they do it and how they do it. The more information we gain about a species, the better we can protect it."
Alex Jordan, research group leader at the Max Planck Institute for Behavioral Biology in Constance
"We want to understand and predict animal decision making in nature. By using new technologies in laboratory experiments, we can measure for the first time the complex movements of freely moving individuals within a collective in natural environments." Iain D. Couzin, director at the Max Planck Institute for Behavioral Biology in Constance
"We want to understand and predict animal decision making in nature. By using new technologies in laboratory experiments, we can measure for the first time the complex movements of freely moving individuals within a collective in natural environments."
Iain D. Couzin, director at the Max Planck Institute for Behavioral Biology in Constance
"I make intensive use of three-dimensional cell cultures for my research, so-called organoids. That's why I know that they can only be used to study certain aspects. They will not be able to completely replace animal experiments in the future, for example, for studying developmental biology issues." Hans Schöler, director at the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Biomedicine in Münster
"I make intensive use of three-dimensional cell cultures for my research, so-called organoids. That's why I know that they can only be used to study certain aspects. They will not be able to completely replace animal experiments in the future, for example, for studying developmental biology issues."
Hans Schöler, director at the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Biomedicine in Münster
"Basic research enables many advances in human and veterinary medicine and even for species conservation. One prerequisite is that the animals used in this field are healthy and feel well. All our animals are cared for by trained animal caretakers and veterinarians - 365 days a year!" Anke Schraepler, head of the animal facility management at the Max Planck Institute for Experimental Medicine in Göttingen
"Basic research enables many advances in human and veterinary medicine and even for species conservation. One prerequisite is that the animals used in this field are healthy and feel well. All our animals are cared for by trained animal caretakers and veterinarians - 365 days a year!"
Anke Schraepler, head of the animal facility management at the Max Planck Institute for Experimental Medicine in Göttingen
"What actually happens in diseases such as Alzheimer's or multiple sclerosis can only be studied in genetically modified mice. Cell cultures cannot yet reproduce the complex interrelationships of our nervous system, and in humans such studies would not be ethical. I am grateful for the animal welfare training at our institute, which taught me how to always treat our laboratory animals with respect, care and concern." Maria Eichel, scientist at the Max Planck Institute for Experimental Medicine in Göttingen
"What actually happens in diseases such as Alzheimer's or multiple sclerosis can only be studied in genetically modified mice. Cell cultures cannot yet reproduce the complex interrelationships of our nervous system, and in humans such studies would not be ethical. I am grateful for the animal welfare training at our institute, which taught me how to always treat our laboratory animals with respect, care and concern."
Maria Eichel, scientist at the Max Planck Institute for Experimental Medicine in Göttingen
"I was once a single cell: a fertilized egg cell. Today, many cell divisions later, my genes and my environment have made me a highly complex organism. But to what extent has my development been influenced by genes and to what extent has my environment shaped me? Such questions can only be studied in living organisms such as genetically modified mice, in which both genes and environment can be altered in a controlled manner." Ursula Fünfschilling, head of the Transgenic Service at the Max Planck Institute for Experimental Medicine in Göttingen
"I was once a single cell: a fertilized egg cell. Today, many cell divisions later, my genes and my environment have made me a highly complex organism. But to what extent has my development been influenced by genes and to what extent has my environment shaped me? Such questions can only be studied in living organisms such as genetically modified mice, in which both genes and environment can be altered in a controlled manner."
Ursula Fünfschilling, head of the Transgenic Service at the Max Planck Institute for Experimental Medicine in Göttingen
"It is very important to us that our animals are doing well. Whenever possible they live together with conspecifics. In addition, their cages are equipped with nesting material and employment opportunities. We adapt the equipment of the cages to the respective experimental conditions and the group of animals, so that each group can live out its favorite activity." Stefan Röglin, deputy animal facility manager at the Max Planck Institute for Experimental Medicine in Göttingen
"It is very important to us that our animals are doing well. Whenever possible they live together with conspecifics. In addition, their cages are equipped with nesting material and employment opportunities. We adapt the equipment of the cages to the respective experimental conditions and the group of animals, so that each group can live out its favorite activity."
Stefan Röglin, deputy animal facility manager at the Max Planck Institute for Experimental Medicine in Göttingen
"For me, the brain is by far the most fascinating human organ. Because it is so tremendously complex, it will be impossible for some time to solve the key questions about neurological and psychiatric brain diseases without studying living brains in animal experiments. Mice are a suitable model organism for this purpose because their neurons and brain regions function similarly to those in humans. Wherever possible, however, we use alternatives such as nerve cells and organoids derived from stem cells."Nils Brose, director at the Max Planck Institute for Experimental Medicine in Göttingen, Germany
"For me, the brain is by far the most fascinating human organ. Because it is so tremendously complex, it will be impossible for some time to solve the key questions about neurological and psychiatric brain diseases without studying living brains in animal experiments. Mice are a suitable model organism for this purpose because their neurons and brain regions function similarly to those in humans. Wherever possible, however, we use alternatives such as nerve cells and organoids derived from stem cells."
Nils Brose, director at the Max Planck Institute for Experimental Medicine in Göttingen, Germany
"We cannot end the Covid-19 pandemic without the prior knowledge from animal experiments that was used to develop vaccines against Sars-Cov-2 within a year. The Max Planck Society is working to reduce the number of animal experiments it conducts and to develop replacement and complementary methods. But we will not be able to completely dispense with animal-based research for the foreseeable future. The pandemic has taught us that, too."Martin Stratmann, president of the Max Planck Society
"We cannot end the Covid-19 pandemic without the prior knowledge from animal experiments that was used to develop vaccines against Sars-Cov-2 within a year. The Max Planck Society is working to reduce the number of animal experiments it conducts and to develop replacement and complementary methods. But we will not be able to completely dispense with animal-based research for the foreseeable future. The pandemic has taught us that, too."
Martin Stratmann, president of the Max Planck Society
"As a physician and neurobiologist, I investigate the mechanisms of psychiatric diseases. To better understand these disorders, we also need animal models. Only they allow us to investigate the interaction of genes and environment in a complex, living organism. Animal research is essential for our research and thus contributes decisively to improving the treatment of our patients." Elisabeth Binder, director at the Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry in Munich
"As a physician and neurobiologist, I investigate the mechanisms of psychiatric diseases. To better understand these disorders, we also need animal models. Only they allow us to investigate the interaction of genes and environment in a complex, living organism. Animal research is essential for our research and thus contributes decisively to improving the treatment of our patients."
Elisabeth Binder, director at the Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry in Munich

Other Interesting Articles

Go to Editor View