International 3Rs prize

Congratulations to Dr Laura Pellegrini (MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology), winner of this year's 3Rs Prize, as well as Dr Jennifer Ashworth (University of Nottingham), whose work was highly commended. Learn more about the winning papers in our news item.

£30k award for international 3Rs prize

Have you published a paper that describes outstanding and original work that has or could have major impacts on the replacement, reduction or refinement of the use of animals in research? If so, then you should apply for the annual NC3Rs prize which is sponsored by GSK to recognise a paper published in the last three years with demonstrable 3Rs impacts.

This prestigious award consists of a £28k prize grant and a £2k personal award.

This year's competition is now closed for applications.

For further information on the 3Rs prize, please contact

Who can apply? | How to applyAssessment procedure | 3Rs Prize selection panel

Who can apply?

Individual eligibility

The prize is for a piece of primary research published in a peer-reviewed journal in the last three years and is open to any researcher, in academia or industry. The prize is awarded to the principal investigator, research team leader, or other nominated author. Typically, the first or last author should be nominated. The competition is open to international groups. 

Establishment eligibility

Applications are welcomed from any research establishment, from academia or industry. Establishments outside of the UK are eligible to apply.

Publication eligibility

Highly original or innovative primary research papers that advance or have the potential to advance the 3Rs are eligible from any area of medical, biological or veterinary research. The work must have been published in a peer reviewed journal between 1 September 2017 and 1 September 2020. Papers that are in press by 1 September 2020 will also be considered. Review articles are not eligible.

3Rs eligibility

The 3Rs impacts of the research should be clearly articulated in the application, ideally with metrics to support. Eligible papers include those where the main purpose of the research was to achieve a 3Rs impact as well those where the 3Rs impacts were a secondary benefit. In the latter case, if the 3Rs potential has yet to be realised then the scale of impact should be estimated.

The prize grant is intended to be used for furthering the 3Rs impact of the research. A short description of how the grant will be used to achieve this should be included in the application form.

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How to apply

3Rs prize nomination form should be completed with the research paper attached and emailed to Nominations are welcome from anyone who is familiar with the research paper - e.g. lead or other author, head of department, journal editor or colleagues. The candidate nominated for the prize should normally be the lead author of the paper. In cases where the 3Rs aspects of the work were carried out by another author, the lead author can delegate the nomination. Entries are limited to one per individual or research group. 

Guidance on completing the nomination form is available.

This year's competition is now closed for applications.

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Assessment procedure

Applications are assessed by a 3Rs Prize Selection Panel.

Entries are assessed by the 3Rs Prize Selection Panel based on:

  • The actual or potential 3Rs impact of the research reported
  • Quality of the published research, including the importance of the research question and the transparency and robustness of the study design
  • How well the 3Rs implications have been disseminated to date
  • Whether the proposal for using the prize grant supports further development of the 3Rs

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3Rs Prize Selection Panel

Member name


Term Ends 

Professor Kevin Shakesheff (Chair)

University of Nottingham


Dr Rob Buckle Medical Research Council 2023

Dr Melanie Graham

University of Minnesota


Professor Axel Kornerup Hansen University of Copenhagen 2023

Professor Georgia Mason

University of Guelph


Professor Stefan Przyborski Durham University 2021

Dr Andrew Welchman

Wellcome Trust


Declarations of interest

Panel members are required to declare any private, professional or commercial interests that might, or that might be perceived to, conflict with the NC3Rs interests.

Declaration of Interests policy (PDF, 48KB)

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