Merel Ritskes-Hoitinga PhD


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Merel Ritskes-Hoitinga PhD
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Merel Ritskes-Hoitinga full professor

Professor Ritskes-Hoitinga's research focuses on systematic reviews (SR) and meta-analysis (MA) of animal studies.

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Merel Ritskes-Hoitinga full professor

Professor Ritskes-Hoitinga's research focuses on systematic reviews (SR) and meta-analysis (MA) of animal studies. SRs and MAs of preclinical studies promote the evidence-based choice of animal models, improve the implementation of the 3Rs (Refinement, Reduction and Replacement), stimulate scientific quality and increase patient safety. When performing SRs of preclinical animal studies next to clinical studies, better translational transparency will be created. Her group develops and publishes tools and guidelines for making this methodology more broadly available, and these tools and guidelines are also incorporated in the teaching programs of SYRCLE (see www.SYRCLE.nl). The Ministry of Economic Affairs (EZ) and the Dutch Health Foundation ZonMW have funded the development of tools, guidelines and teaching programs.

After graduating as a veterinarian, Merel became a laboratory animal scientist with the goal to improve scientific quality and welfare of laboratory animals simultaneously. After one year in Japan, doing biomedical research, she did a PhD on Refinement at Utrecht University and was trained to become Animal Welfare Officer. From 1990 to 1996 she worked at the Unilever Research laboratory, as the head of the animal unit and as Animal Welfare Officer. From 1996-2005 she was professor in Laboratory Animal Science and head of the Biomedical Laboratory of the University of Southern Denmark in Odense. Since 2005 she is professor in Laboratory Animal Science and head of the Centraal  Dierenlaboratorium (CDL) at the Radboud University Medical Centre. In 2006, Merel founded the 3R Research Centre. This was later transformed into SYRCLE, the SYstematic Review Centre for Laboratory animal Experimentation.

Research group Systematic Reviews of Animal Studies

Merel Ritskes-Hoitinga's research subgroup aims to increase the value and reduce the waste of research in animal studies.

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Personal prizes & awards national & international

  • 2017: International Cochrane REWARD 2nd. prize
  • 2011: Lef in't Lab prijs, Dierenbescherming (Dutch Organisation for the Protection for Animal Welfare)
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Personal prizes & awards national & international

  • 2017: International Cochrane REWARD 2nd. prize
  • 2011: Lef in't Lab prijs, Dierenbescherming (Dutch Organisation for the  Protection for Animal Welfare)
  • 2010: Price by SGV (Swiss Association for Laboratory Animal Science) for the Gold Standard Publication Checklist, as best publication in Laboratory animal science

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SYstematic Review Center for Laboratory animal Experimentation SYRCLE

SYRCLE envisions a world in which any animal-based research conducted is justified, rigorous and of high translational value. Our mission is to develop, apply and disseminate the methodology of systematic reviews of animal studies to advance responsible animal-based research.

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Radboud Institute for Health Sciences

Ideally, every procedure in clinical practice and public health should take place based on proof, instead of intuition or 'experience'. Our aim is to improve clinical practice and public health.

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