A Sacrifice for Mankind

Nina Yang

Introduction

Animal research and experimentation lead to many advances in the prevention, treatments and cures for diseases. There are many treatments, vaccines, antibodies, and medicine used to prevent and cure sicknesses. Medication of all sorts is first tested many times in animals before Phase 1 clinical trials. Phase 1 clinical trials contain humans with a specific disease in need of a cure. These clinical trials determine the reaction of the drug in the body, the effectiveness, and the side effects of a drug ("Animal Research Is Unethical and Scientifically Unnecessary"). Because of animal research, there are now new vaccine candidates for anthrax, plague, Ebola, Hantaviruses, botulinum neurotoxins, and many others ("Medical Progress Depends on Animal Research"). These candidates may become the vaccine that saves many lives one day.

Thesis

Animal experimentation is important because it can help prevent and find cures for many diseases, and help scientists produce the right medication for patients.

Concession 1

Animals are forced to inhale poisonous fumes, stay paralyzed in restraint devices for hours, have holes drilled into their skulls, have skin burned off, get their spinal cords crushed, and get psychologically traumatized. They are kept in barren cages and isolated from the same kind. The animals are "treated like nothing more than disposable laboratory equipment" ("Animal Research Is Unethical and Scientifically Unnecessary").

Concession 2

Ninety-two percent of drugs that are tested on animals are not able to advance to Phase 1 clinical trials. In 2010, at least 85 HIV/AID vaccines succeeded in primates, but almost 200 failed in humans ("Animal Research Is Unethical and Scientifically Unnecessary").
Firstly, animal experimentation prevents and cures diseases. Alternates such as in vitro testing or test tube testing are not always accurate. "A drug might work fine on a cell in a test tube, but it has no circulatory system, no liver, no brain, and no nervous system at all. A test tube cannot feel pain or get pregnant. We just don't know for sure until we try it on a living creature" ("It is Not Possible to Completely Replace Animals in Research"). Scientists use in vitro testing whenever possible. The in vitro experiment is the first step of a research. If the experiment is successful after repeated many times, then the drug will move on to an in vivo experiment. A procedure is written and sent to Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) for approval. After the procedure is approved, the scientist can then test the drug in animals. If the cure also succeeds in animals, a written document is submitted to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for approval. Once the FDA approves the drug, the drug Is further studied in the Phase 1 clinical trials. If the drug works on humans in the Phase 1 clinical trials, then it moves on to Phase 2 and then Phase 3. After Phase 3, the drug can be used for patients to treat a specific disease. A researcher once said that working with animals allows him to test something that would usually take six to eight decades in humans in only six to eight months (Michigan Society for Medical Research 403). This happens because the life span of animals is shorter than humans. The animals are tools that help people find curable drugs for diseases.
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Secondly, animal testing is the only way to find treatments and medication for sicknesses. Through doing many experiments, scientists learn from their observations and change the properties of the drug to help them succeed in the future. Their goal is to find a drug that is effective and the least toxic to humans. In vivo testing is necessary for medical research to go further. In vivo tools are created for conducting research in a living organism. One of the most valuable in vivo tools in the industry is the rodent model (Mulder). About 18.2 million people have diabetes. After experimenting with animals, scientists found new treatments for the type 1 and type 2 diabetes. They include an islet transplant for type one and new medication for type 2 diabetes. Without these treatments, diabetes could soon lead to blindness, kidney disease, heart disease, and stroke ("Medical Progress Depends on Animal Research"). Animal experimentation is the key to our daily medication.

Benefits of Animal Experimentation

The Benefits of Animal Testing

Conclusion

In conclusion, animal experimentation is important for many different reasons. Two of the most important reasons are that animal experimentation is needed to prevent and find cures for diseases, and produce the most effective medication for patients. Animal experimentation has helped cancer patients have a 10.7% increased life expectancy ("Medical Progress Depends on Animal Research"). It has helped humans come up with many vaccines such as the one for polio. Researchers have developed medicines and treatment methodologies for many patients. Taken together, animal testing has saved the lives of millions of people. Animals used in research are a necessary sacrifice. Let's use it, but not abuse it!

Works Cited

American Anti-Vivisection Society. "Animal Research Is Unethical and Scientifically Unnecessary." Animal Experimentation. Ed. Susan C. Hunnicutt. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2013. At Issue. Rpt. from "Problems with Animal Research." 2011. Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Web. 10 Feb. 2015.


Americans for Medical Progress. "Medical Progress Depends on Animal Research." Animal Experimentation. Ed. Susan C. Hunnicutt. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2013. At Issue. Rpt. from "Animal Research Means Medical Progress." 2012. Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Web. 6 Feb. 2015.


Michigan Society for Medical Research. Animals in Research: A Research Guide. Ann Arbor: Michigan Society for Medical Research, Print.


Mulder, Guy. "Rats and Mice Are Important for Cancer Research." Animal Experimentation. Ed. Susan C. Hunnicutt. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2013. At Issue. Rpt. from "The Next Rodent Model." Drug Discovery & Development (8 Apr. 2011). Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Web. 21 Feb. 2015.


Speaking of Research. "It Is Not Possible to Completely Replace Animals in Medical Research." Animal Experimentation. Ed. Susan C. Hunnicutt. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2013. At Issue. Rpt. from "Alternatives?" Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Web. 10 Feb. 2015.