Refinement of experimental design and conduct in laboratory animal research

Jeremy D. Bailoo, Thomas S. Reichlin, Hanno Würbel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

72 Scopus citations


The scientific literature of laboratory animal research is replete with papers reporting poor reproducibility of results as well as failure to translate results to clinical trials in humans. This may stem in part from poor experimental design and conduct of animal experiments. Despite widespread recognition of these problems and implementation of guidelines to attenuate them, a review of the literature suggests that experimental design and conduct of laboratory animal research are still in need of refinement. This paper will review and discuss possible sources of biases, highlight advantages and limitations of strategies proposed to alleviate them, and provide a conceptual framework for improving the reproducibility of laboratory animal research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)383-391
Number of pages9
JournalILAR Journal
Issue number3
StatePublished - Dec 20 2014


  • 3R
  • External validity
  • Internal validity
  • Preregistration
  • Refinement
  • Reproducibility
  • Standardization


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