The EUPRIM-Net Project
Humans and nonhuman primates, both placed to the order “Primates”, are biologically closely related. Their genetic similarity reflects not only in their resemblance in physiognomy and behaviour, but also in their organ system functions or their nervous systems. Understanding the biology of nonhuman primates helps us to understand our own biology. That is why nonhuman primates play an important role in biological and biomedical research. This group of animals, in the following referred to as primates, provides models which are essential for research in genomics and biotechnology for health. The successful development of new strategies against human diseases like infectious (e.g. HIV, hepatitis) and neurological diseases (e.g. Alzheimer´s or Parkinson Disease) or cancer depends on the availability of living animals or biological material with primate origin. This also holds true for the development of new therapeutics (vaccines, gene therapy) and transplantation research.
Breeding of primates and primate research has to be done under high ethical standards and is therefore carried out in appropriately equipped facilities. Now, the EU funded EUPRIM-Net links nine European primate centres in order to combine their wide range of biological and biomedical R&D activities, their extensive knowledge and infrastructure resources, as well as their solid experience in primate housing and breeding. The project covers the central aspects of primate research and is aimed at advancing knowledge and competence in the areas of research, animal keeping and breeding. With this efficient network the already existing knowledge and resources are integrated and enable an improvement of basic and applied biological and biomedical research and of housing and breeding conditions.
The objectives of the project focus on animal welfare, the standardisation of procedures and methods, the enhanced availability of primates and training for those working with primates.
A leaflet about EUPRIM-Net is available for download here (pdf, 3.1 MB).