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When: February 27, 2024 at 14:00 (Helsinki, East-European Time) 

Title: “Aging Lab Animals, Aging Research, Aging Standards” 

Speaker: Dr. Steven Niemi (Boston University, USA) 

Host: Dr. Vootele Voikar (Helsinki University)

The concept of standards has been embedded in lab animal care since the early days and for good reason. They have been useful for improving animal welfare and scientific data integrity. But we continuously learn more about how animals are influenced by their environment (including their microbiome as well as how we interact with them) while standards do not change. When do standards jeopardize rather than support research and discourage innovations in husbandry, breeding, and veterinary care? Why should one-size-fits-all continue to be followed blindly when we can easily customize the lab animal’s environment and experiences as knowledge evolves and new needs arise? Examples of barriers to progress and options will be presented for discussion.


With over 40 years’ experience in biomedical research and commercial biotechnology, Steve has held senior management positions in contract drug and device development, biotech start-ups in human gene therapy and food animal genomics, and laboratory animal care and assurance. He is a Diplomate and past president of the American College of Laboratory Animal Medicine and has served on numerous boards and national task forces addressing medical product development and laboratory animal welfare. Steve earned an AB with a concentration in Biology from Harvard College, a DVM from Washington State University, and received a US Public Health Service National Research Service Award while a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He completed the Program for Management Development at the Harvard Business School in 1991 and was a 2019-2020 Visiting Fellow in the Animal Law & Policy Program at Harvard Law School. Steve currently is Attending Veterinarian and Director, Animal Science Center, Boston University and Adjunct Professor, Department of Comparative Pathobiology, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University. 

Register in advance for this meeting:  

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting. 

During the webinar, please keep your cameras off and your microphones muted. After the main talk, we have time for discussion where you can participate with your face and voice! 

ScandLAS Annual Conference 2024

Scandinavian Society for Laboratory Animal Science (ScandLAS) hosts Annual Conference 2024 in Tampere, Finland!

Meeting will take place form May 21st to May 24th, 2024. Theme of the meeting is “Science & Care”. Follow their website for more information.

Abstract submission is open until February 29th, 2024 and registrations for the event are already open.