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[Free Report] (Ab)Use of Animals for Scientific Needs

by Khushi Chindaliya | 23-01-2021 15:24 recommendations 0 recommendations

(Ab)Ulse of Animals for Scientific Needs in the 21st Century

I recently read a report that to instigate birth defects in baby monkeys, the impregnated monkeys were injected with perilous levels of nicotine for medical research at Oregon National Primate Research Center in 2009 (Investigation of ONPRC).  After these babies are born, they were immediately experimented upon and then killed. They were used, abused and disposed of by humans as per their convenience for medical research. The cruelty of these researches is horrifying and distressing. 
 
The useless brutality of the incident makes me question: is humanity only limited to the human race? The use of animals in scientific research and the associated animal cruelty is a crucial 21st century problem requiring an immediate solution. The contemporary world witnesses development of cutting edge technology and sophisticated medical innovations almost every day. Therefore, the ability to reduce, replace and even eliminate animal research methods is real.  

A review from the Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics states that only close to 4% of drugs that pass preclinical tests and highly expensive animal medical testing successfully find a path to clinical markets; it describes the main cause of failures as “lack of effectiveness and the safety problems that were not predicted by animal tests” (Akhtar 410). The high failure rate validates that most, if not all, animal experiments are unnecessary. They can be replaced with human-patient simulators (computerised patients with lifelike features and physiology), in vitro methods (sophisticated tests using human cells and tissues) and in silico methods (computerised modelling techniques stimulating human biology) amongst other state-of the art non-animal research methods that are usually less expensive and less time consuming (Alternatives to Testing).  

Some may try to justify these practices by saying that cats kill more animals in a month than the total number of animals killed in medical research in an entire year. Charles Darwin in his book Origin of Species states the principle of natural selection as “survival of the fittest”. People, however, widely disagreed and condemned the use of this principle as an inspiration behind the Holocaust led by the Nazi’s in World War II as they questioned its moral logic. It was stated by many that humans possess cognitive ability and rational intelligence and a needless bloodshed in the form of racial oppression should be avoided at all cost. Why cannot this moral equality trickle down to the animals at the last taxonomic order? Why do we continue to use and kill animals in scientific research, in the 21st century, when efficient alternatives exist?

India has already banned use of animal testing to manufacture cosmetic products however animal experimentation for drugs is still not banned in India. The government can play a pivotal role to motivate alternatives to animal testing. To discourage animal based research methods it can implement necessary taxation policies and to encourage alternatives of animal testing it can provide subsidies. It is also rudimentary for the governments across the world to introduce regulations that permit animal testing only if all alternate research methods (non-animal) cannot be used and impose a ban on use of animals in medical schools. These measures can aid in propagating ethical science and terminating the use of animals in scientific research in our times. 
 
With the unprecedented outbreak of COVID-19, many researchers across the world have resorted to test the applicability of the drugs and vaccines on mice, ferrets, hamsters and monkeys. A high probability exists that even after multiple testings on these petrified animals, the cure would fail during the human trial. For example, an assessment from 2008 states that almost 90 HIV vaccines that passed animal testing failed during the human trial (Bailey). Therefore, a shift in perspective and practice is necessary in the scientific community in the 21st century to help bridge the gap between morality and science.
 
Works Cited

“Alternatives to Animal Testing”, peta.org, People for Ethical Treatment of Animals, Accessed 19 May 2020, https://www.peta.org/issues/animals-used-for-experimentation/alternatives-animal-testing/.  

Akhtar, Aysha. “The Flaws and Human Harms of Animal Experimentation”, Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics, vol. 24, no. 4, October 2015, pp. 407- 419, ncbi.nlm.nhi.gov, 10.1017/S0963180115000079.

Bailey, Jarrod. “An assessment of the role of chimpanzees in AIDS vaccine research.” Alternatives to laboratory animals : ATLA, vol. 36, no. 4, September 2008, pp: 381-428, doi:10.1177/026119290803600403.

“Investigation of ONPRC Reveals Horrifying Abuse of Monkeys Used in Cruel and Useless Experiments”, peta.org, People for Ethical Treatment of Animals, 1 October 2018, https://www.peta.org/features/onprc/.
 

 

KhushiChindaliya

  • India E-gen Ambassador Khushi Chindaliya
 
 

6 Comments

Asmita Gaire

  • Asmita Gaire says :
    Greetings khushi
    I hope you are doing well
    Thank you so much for this report
    Keep writing
    Green cheers
    Regards
    Asmita Gaire
    Posted 13-02-2021 14:21

Mun WooJooMentor

  • Mun WooJooMentor says :
    Hello Khushi,
    this is your mentor WooJoo.

    Warm greetings from South Korea.
    Thank you for sharing your report regarding current concerns.
    It is true that there is cruelty, and some might come up with ethical issues.
    But presently examinations and trials on humans are prohibited for same ethical issues.
    I heard that now in cosmetics field, the animal testing is prohibited,
    and maybe there might be similar changes in different fields of science in the future.
    Unfortunately, for now we don't have other alternatives to stop the animal testing,
    but hopefully we can find another way to prove the effectiveness.

    Keep sharing

    Regards,
    WooJoo
    Posted 26-01-2021 23:30

Khushi Chindaliya

Khushi Chindaliya

SJ Mentor

  • SJ Mentor says :
    Hello Khushi!
    It's your SJ mentor.

    Welcome Back!
    Thank you for writing a report concerning animal testing.
    Large number of animals are being tested for humans.
    With the growing awareness of animal ethics, there are currently several ways to replace animal testing.
    As you said, even if you succeed in animal testing, there is no guarantee that it functions the same as humans.
    However, due to the high rate of genetic matches between animal and human DNA, animal testing is essential prior to clinical trials.
    Since experiments cannot be conducted on people, in-depth consideration of bioethics and alternatives to animal testing are becoming more necessary.

    Keep writing!

    Best regards,
    SJ mentor.
    Posted 25-01-2021 05:20

Shobha Pokhrel

  • Shobha Pokhrel says :
    Thanks for sharing such an informative Report .

    Keep Sharing

    warm regards ,

    shobha
    Posted 23-01-2021 22:48

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