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If You Think Animal Experiments Are Essential, Then Read On...

By   Follow Me on Twitter     Message Stephen Motson       (Page 1 of 6 pages)     Permalink    (# of views)   3 comments

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The idea behind animal experimentation (vivisection) is that if a new drug or medical procedure is tested on an animal, such as a mouse, rat, cat, dog, or whatever, then the results of such an experiment would give us an indication on the effects of that drug or substance on a human patient. We would be given an indication of its effectiveness (how well it works); its possible side-effects (how much harm it is likely to cause); as well as its toxicity (how poisonous the drug or substance is likely to be); right?...WRONG

The simple fact is that animals not only respond in different ways to other animals, but also in different and contradictory ways to people. Animal experiments are not a help but a hindrance to medical research. If a new drug or procedure is found to be beneficial to an animal, say a rat, it would only be beneficial for other rats and cannot be readily transferred onto other species. Any vet would tell you that most medicines we readily take could have a catastrophic, even fatal, effect if given to a pet. In the same way, it would be unwise for us to take a drug intended for a pet dog, cat, or budgerigar. Besides which, people do not suffer from the same diseases or illnesses that animals suffer, and vice-versa. The idea that we can simulate human ills in animals (which animals would not normally suffer from), create a drug to cure this artificial illness, THEN pass it on to humans as a safe and reliable cure, is totally absurd.

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For instance, research into Multiple Sclerosis (which doesn't normally affect animals) is simulated in a laboratory by injecting fluids into laboratory animals so that it appears as if the animal has developed MS. The researchers would then attempt to find a cure for this simulated disease (which occurred as the result of a fluid being injected into the joints of a laboratory animal, and not the disease itself) by feeding them with various substances or drugs. If the researchers were successful and managed to alleviate the symptoms in the laboratory animals what would it show? Years of meaningless experiments, costing millions of pounds, and effecting thousands of MS sufferers' lives, would have been wasted. The only apparent benefit being that the researchers in question would be guaranteed many years of work and wages, foolishly following one another up the same blind alley we call medical research. Incidentally, the research discussed, using the exact same procedures, is still going on today, and has been for many decades! Is it any wonder why we are no nearer to finding a cure for Multiple Sclerosis? It is this foolish reliance on animal experimentation that has seriously retarded medical research in all fields.

EFFECTIVENESS

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So how effective are drugs and medical procedures which have been tested on animals (how well do they work)? The simple answer is that animal experiments are a very unreliable indicator of effectiveness in people. Take the case of the TB vaccine which proved effective in chimpanzees, but was later withdrawn after it was shown that it actually caused TB in people; or Urethane, a drug used to treat leukaemia, (which had undergone years of rigorous tests and experiments on a host of different types and species of animals), proving to be safe and effective, but was later withdrawn after it had shown to cause cancer of the liver, lungs, and bone-marrow in people. Barbiturates (ie, Nembutomol) were prescribed to prevent insomnia, but actually caused insomnia; or take the case of the heart-drug Epinepherine which caused the death of 852 heart patients in New York City in late 1982 and early 1983. Even though the physician in charge of the investigation stated that he was unable to discover a single surviving case among the 852 patients who were injected with this drug, Epinepherine was still not withdrawn from the market!

The fact that rigorous animal experiments had passed all of these drugs as an effective treatment or cure for people (and there are thousands of other instances similar to the ones mentioned) demonstrates that animal experiments are not a reliable measure of assessing the effectiveness of any new substance or drug. If anything, they highlight the danger of using animals as an indicator of effectiveness. On this basis alone, it is clear that all experiments on animals should be stopped. Unfortunately there is worse to come.

SIDE EFFECTS

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Side effects of drugs, passed as safe by animal experiments, have caused death, cancer, blindness, paralysis, psychosis (often leading to suicide) and a host of other disasters. As far as the predictability of possible side-effects (how much harm it is likely to cause people), experiments on animals have shown to be totally useless, if not extremely dangerous.

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Age 46. MSc. in Criminal Investigation; BSc. Hons in Psychology & Criminology (also MBPsS). Interested in the unexplained and inexplicable, psychology and crime, religion, comedy (ex-comedy writer for the BBC and German television) and humour. AKA (more...)
 

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