Home Office Advisory Committee on Animal Experiments (HOACAE)

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Paton, Sir William Drummond Macdonald (1917-1993), Pharmacologist
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In a letter dated 28 February, 1980, Sir Wiliam Whitelaw, Home Secretary, wrote to Paton: "As announced in the House of Commons on 25th July 1979, the Advisory Committee is to be reconstituted with wider terms of reference.... The Committee's job until fairly recently was confined to considering individual experimental proposals which presented new questions of principle or other exceptional difficulty. Since 1975, however, with the introduction of lay members, the Committee has considered wider questions and produced important published reports. The Committee's remit is now to be extended further and ... will include advising the Secretary of State on proposals for changes in the law" (E/2/1). Paton was invited and accepted to serve as a member of the Committee for a period of three years. Professor Mary Warnock, a former member of the Committee, chaired the newly-constituted Committee, which met on a monthly basis. Whitelaw's letter continues: "I propose to appoint 12 members on the lines recommended by the Departmental Committee on Experiments on Animals in their Report (Cmnd. 2641) in 1965, that is, five drawn from the fields of medicine, biological science and pharmacy (to include experience of teaching establishments and of the chemical or pharmaceutical industry); two who are veterinarians; one member with a knowledge of experimental psychology; and four non-scientific members (i.e. two lay and two associated with animal welfare interests)."



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