Highlights of the Joint 3R Symposium

Posted on: 21/07/2024

Last September, the RE-Place team organised a three-day 3R Symposium in collaboration with the European Consortium TWINALT and the Innovation Centre 3R (IC-3Rs) at the VUB Health Campus in Brussels.


Program & Keynote Speakers

The Symposium focussed on methods and technologies towards the replacement of laboratory animals. Keynote speakers included, amongst others, Prof. Barbara Viviani (Università di Milano, IT) who discussed the use of Adverse Outcome Pathways for hazard identification, Dr. Annalisa Gastaldello (European Commission, EU) who gave an overview on the 3Rs resources from EURL-ECVAM, Prof. Ellen Fritsche (University of Düsseldorf, DE) who presented her work on the in vitro test battery for developmental neurotoxicity, and Prof. Yoni Baert (Vrije Universiteit Brussel, BE) who discussed about in vitro models of the human testis.


Expertise from the RE-Place database

The Organizing Committee dedicated two sessions of the programme to speakers from the RE-Place database. During the first session themed ‘Modelling Tools in Practise’, Prof. Fred Vermolen (UHasselt, BE) and Prof. Emmeric Tanghe (UGent, BE) presented their work respectively on Mathematics as an alternative for animal experiments in burn injuries and the Hippocampal Formation Model of Temporal Lobe Epilepsy. The second session from RE-Place, themed ‘3D Tissue Models’, welcomed three other speakers from the RE-Place database. Dr. Ursula Smole (UGent, BE) talked about lung organoids to study allergic asthma, Dr. Bella B. Manshian (KU Leuven, BE) discussed high-throughput Screening of 3D Precision-Cut Tissue Slices and Eva Blondeel (UGent, BE) presented the MISpheroID knowledgebase. The RE-Place team warmly thanks their speakers for their interesting presentations and valuable contribution during this Symposium!


Oral and Poster Presentations

During the Symposium, participants were given the opportunity to present their work related to the 3Rs and to compete for the Best Oral or Poster Presentation Prize. The Organizing Committee received more than 30 abstracts for oral and/or poster presentations. Martijn Heleven (University of Hasselt, BE) received the public prize of the Best Poster Presentation for his poster entitled ‘Real-time neurotoxicity assessment in planarians’. The jury attributed the Best Oral Presentation Prizes to Anouck Thienpont (VUB & Sciensano, BE), Karolien Bijnens (University of Hasselt, BE) and Helia Fernandes (Politecnico Milano, IT). Congratulations!


Highlights of the Symposium

The Symposium was financially supported by the European Consortium TWINALT (funded under Horizon2020) and IC-3Rs. Also, eight companies and the ‘Fonds Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek’ (FWO) sponsored the Symposium. More than 120 participants from 7 different nationalities participated in the event. This was the perfect opportunity for participants from various research fields and organizations (academics, industries, international 3R centres, the European Commission, etc) to network and discuss their perspectives on the future of 3Rs.

A big thanks to all speakers for their inspiring lectures, and an even bigger thanks to the whole IVTD organizing committee to help us organizing this event! This would not have been possible without your support!

And finally, another big thanks to all participants for your enthusiasm in joining our event! See you next year!


Joint 3R Symposium, 19 to 21 September 2023, Brussels