International Laboratory Animal Technician Week 2023

Do you have a favorite fairy tale? Maybe The Three Little Pigs or Goldie Locks brings back fond memories- or were you were more of a Snow White or Little Red Riding Hood fan? Magic captured our hearts at an early age and is a very fitting theme for 2023’s International Animal Technician Appreciation Week.

Upon hearing the theme was “Technicians Bring the Magic”, we can’t help but be reminded of an old classic- The Elves and The Shoemaker. If you’re not familiar, in its broadest strokes the story is about an old shoemaker who has seen some hard times making and selling shoes. One night as he’s closing up his shop, he realizes he only has enough materials to make one more pair of shoes! He sadly lays out his work for the next day, sensing the end of his shop is near.

However, when he returns the next morning he finds a brilliant pair of finished shoes— which he immediately sells for enough materials to keep making more. This pattern continues for many nights, with beautiful shoes magically appearing each morning and keeping the shoemaker’s shop in business. Eventually he decides to stay in the shop one night and see who has been making the magic happen.  ‘Lo and behold, elves have been coming in every night and working hard to create the beautiful shoes making his shop so successful.

While it can seem like all the remarkable new cures, treatments, and advancements in research are magical, they actually stem from the hard work and dedication Animal and Vivarium Technicians put in 24/7/365. In vivo technicians play a critical role in both the research process and ensuring the highest standards of care for research animals, enabling the “magic” of pharmaceutical innovation to happen.

At RockStep, we want to take a moment to show our appreciation for the Animal and Vivarium Techs around the globe and the tireless dedication they bring to both their institutions and the animals in their care. Sometimes it may seem like the work is being finished by elves, but we know better. To all the techs: we hope you enjoy the celebrations. Thank you so much for the work you do, advancing drug discovery for the benefit of us all!

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Why Animal Research is Important for Drug Development

mouse on glove

Animal research is important for drug development as it focuses on understanding the biology and genetics of living organisms. In biomedical studies, this type of analysis aims to understand disease etiology and progression. It is used to identify potential biochemical pathways that might serve as targets for drugs to cure or mitigate diseases. Without animal research, our medical science progress would not be nearly as advanced as it is today.

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in Vivo vs. in Vitro Testing – What’s the Difference?

The development of new medications is a very delicate and time-consuming process. It’s essential for drug researchers to carefully examine all potential aspects and effects a drug might have before moving it to market. This is to reduce the risk of adverse side effects negatively impacting buyers.

Modern pharmaceutical and biomedical research require robust testing in the form of in vivo and in vitro testing. It’s important to understand the similarities and differences between these two testing models and the capabilities each offers.

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