Join Animal Free Research UK in the fight against COVID-19

Join Animal Free Research UK in the fight against COVID-19

New crises need new solutions – and your support can help fund them. 

Current COVID-19 tests only tell you if the virus is in your body – not whether you are still infectious.  

But Prof Lorna Harries and her team at our Animal Replacement Centre (ARC2.0) at the University of Exeter are currently optimising a test that could tell users not only whether they are carrying active virus, but also how much.

The current test for the COVID-19 virus includes ingredients derived from animals and detects only the presence of viral particles (which can be infectious or non-infectious). Lorna’s new test will be animal free as all animal-derived materials are replaced by synthetic equivalents 

By using human tissue samples from COVID-19 infected people, Lorna and her team are able to make their research truly human relevant and detect the exact number of copies of active viral particles in a sample. 

This test has three major benefits. It will: 

  1. Get healthcare workers back to work faster and safely 
  2. Help predict how poorly people are likely to become 
  3. Measure how effective emerging new treatments can be 

At the moment front-line medical staff are ‘flying blind’, having no option but to risk their lives and the lives of the people they’re caring for. 

This test is based on animal free research, and it can be in use in a matter of weeks. 

The new test will be trialled on human patients with COVID-19 and the results compared with current methods of testing. 


Animal free research techniques are successfully being used in the fight against COVID-19
, paving the way for the new approach to testing and research that we all want – a kinder science.

Read the full press release

Read Carla’s blog post about how this current crisis can also offer us hope for a better future.

In the event we raise over £52,000, any additional donations will be used to set up our Rapid Response Fund which will accelerate our ability to support life-changing animal free research.

Single Gift

Your gift will help raise vital funds to go towards a new COVID-19 test that could get healthcare workers back to work faster and safely.

Regular Gift

A regular gift will help us fight COVID-19 and permanently fund our Rapid Response Fund for a kinder science.

2.6 Challenge

Take on the 2.6 Challenge for Animal Free Research UK to help fund a new animal-free COVID-19 test and other groundbreaking projects.

Join Animal Free Research UK in the fight against COVID-19

Single Gift

Your gift will help raise vital funds to go towards a new COVID-19 test that could get healthcare workers back to work faster and safely.

Regular Gift

A regular gift will help us fight COVID-19 and permanently fund our Rapid Response Fund for a kinder science.

2.6 Challenge

Take on the 2.6 Challenge for Animal Free Research UK to help fund a new animal-free COVID-19 test and other groundbreaking projects.

New crises need new solutions – and your support can help fund them. 

Current COVID-19 tests only tell you if the virus is in your body – not whether you are still infectious.  

But Prof Lorna Harries and her team at our Animal Replacement Centre (ARC2.0) at the University of Exeter are currently optimising a test that could tell users not only whether they are carrying active virus, but also how much.

The current test for the COVID-19 virus includes ingredients derived from animals and detects only the presence of viral particles (which can be infectious or non-infectious). Lorna’s new test will be animal free as all animal-derived materials are replaced by synthetic equivalents 

By using human tissue samples from COVID-19 infected people, Lorna and her team are able to make their research truly human relevant and detect the exact number of copies of active viral particles in a sample. 

This test has three major benefits. It will: 

  1. Get healthcare workers back to work faster and safely 
  2. Help predict how poorly people are likely to become 
  3. Measure how effective emerging new treatments can be 

At the moment front-line medical staff are ‘flying blind’, having no option but to risk their lives and the lives of the people they’re caring for. 

This test is based on animal free research, and it can be in use in a matter of weeks. 

The new test will be trialled on human patients with COVID-19 and the results compared with current methods of testing. 


Animal free research techniques are successfully being used in the fight against COVID-19
, paving the way for the new approach to testing and research that we all want – a kinder science.

In the event we raise over £52,000, any additional donations will be used to set up our Rapid Response Fund which will accelerate our ability to support life-changing animal free research.