Lord Dowding Fund for humane research


National Antivisection Society

Some Past LDF Successes


In the past 20 years, the Lord Dowding Fund has been at the forefront of important research in a wide range of disciplines, here are just a few examples of the diversity of work we have supported:

Testing Dental Fillings

The Lord Dowding Fund supported the development of a ‘model cavity’ system, using human dental tissue (so avoiding species differences), to test the toxicity of dental materials. The system became a British Standard technique in 1987. Monkeys and other animals have been saved from cruel experiments involving drilling their teeth. (Dr S Meryon)

Microsurgery Training

The use of the human placenta as a medium for training in microsurgery techniques has made the use of animals in this area obsolete. (Mr P Townsend)

Toxicity Testing

The LDF has supported various projects developing non-animal methods for toxicity testing, one, for example has utilised human placenta for toxicity screening test. (Dr R Beaconsfield)

Saving Animals in Education

Computer simulations used in education prevent the wasteful deaths of tens of thousands of frogs, cats, guinea pigs, rats and rabbits each year in teaching. The LDF has funded the development and promotion of these techniques since the mid 1980’s. Now Universities throughout the world, that once used animals in physiology practicals as a matter of course, use instead computer simulations developed with LDF funding. (Dr D Dewhurst)


A common reason for failure in Continuous Ambulatory Peritoneal Dialysis was discovered in vitro (growing cells in culture, outside of the body), leading to safer dialysis. Experiments in mice failed to produce results. (Dr M Dawson)

Cot Death

Computer based analytical techniques were applied to the study of SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome), or cot death, to replace the use of foetal lambs in such research. (Dr R Kitney)

Drug Testing

Drug testing using a micro-assay system has been developed. This is capable of semi-automation and enables the study of the way antibiotics work within the human body. It will assist in the development of drugs, possibly leading to the identification of new classes of anti-microbial agents. (Dr S Hammond)

Quantum Pharmacology

Innovative work on quantum pharmacology in the 1970s contributed to the recognition of the significance of theoretical chemistry in drug research, so often used to discover drugs today. (Dr W Richards)

Eye Research

The perfection of a technique for growing the human lens in culture facilitated the study of factors that disturb its normal function. (Dr G Duncan)

Study of Cognitive Function

Cognitive function was studied in patients who had suffered damage to the fore-brain by employing sophisticated new psychological tests. This methodology offers an alternative to deliberately damaging the brains of living animals. (RC Fichera)

Infertility Research

A method for the culture of human biopsy-derived testis tissue could clarify some of the mechanisms that cause infertility. (Dr C Barratt)

© National Anti-Vivisection Society