Refining animal research: The Animal Study Registry

  • Date: May 24, 2019
  • Time: 11:00 - 12:00
  • Speaker: Prof. Dr. Gilbert Schönfelder
  • German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR)
  • Location: Max-Planck-Institut für biophysikalische Chemie (MPIBPC)
  • Room: Ludwig-Prandtl-Saal
  • Host: Dr. Sarah Kimmina
  • Contact:
Refining animal research: The Animal Study Registry
The demand for greater transparency of animal studies by the public as well as by the scientific community is rising worldwide. The discussion is accentuated by the insufficient reproducibility of results gained from animal experiments and their poor extrapolation to humans. Reporting bias, HARKing (Hypothesizing After the Results are Known), p-hacking, poor statistical design, and the low probability to successfully publishing ‘negative’/null results have been identified as major factors contributing to the reproducibility crisis.
Scientists worldwide discuss pre-registration of animal studies to increase transparency and reproducibility of biomedical research and simultaneously strengthen animal welfare. For this reason, the German Centre for the Protection of Laboratory Animals (Bf3R) at the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) has launched the new preregistration platform Animal Study Registry ( The registry is designed for both exploratory and confirmatory studies in the field of basic and preclinical research, as well as for applied science. The registration form serves as a checklist for scientists, helping them to plan their study thoroughly by asking detailed questions concerning study design, methods, and statistics. With the registration in Animal Study Registry the study receives a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) which marks the study as intellectual property of the researcher. The visibility of the registered study can be restricted for up to five years, which is a distinctive characteristic of our registry. During the embargo period, the visibility of the study is restricted to a short summary. The full content of the study becomes publicly accessible at the end of the embargo period.
As a scientifically independent federal institution, the BfR can provide continuity for the platform as well as data security. Registering a study in the Animal Study Registry proves the researcher´s commitment to transparency and data quality to reviewers and editors, to third party donors, and to the general public.
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