Should there be animal testing?

Is it really worth it?


Animal testing, also known as animal experimentation, animal research, and in vivo testing, is the use of non-human animals in experiments (although some research about animals involves only natural behaviors or pure observation, such as a mouse running a maze or field studies of chimp troops). The research is conducted inside universities, medical schools, pharmaceutical companies, farms, defense establishments, and commercial facilities that provide animal-testing services to industry.[1] It includes pure research such as genetics,developmental biology, behavioral studies, as well as applied research such as biomedical research, xenotransplantation, drug testing andtoxicology tests, including cosmetics testing. Animals are also used for education, breeding, and defense research. The practice is regulated to various degrees in different countries.

Background Information

Around 50-100 million vertebrate animals are used is experiments annually. Most animals are euthanized after being used in an experiment.

Are tested animals being treated fairly?

  • Intelligent animals have less things to do, do to the fact that all animals being studied are kept in cages.
  • Not having anything to do, especially when it comes to the smart animals, can affect their lives and emotions, also affecting test results.
  • Getting exercise is a need to most animals, but when in their cages they aren't taken out for daily exercises to be kept in good shape.

It can be painful and distressing to the animal when being tested.

  • 489,262 animals that were used in last year's testing went through pain and distress.
  • 103,764 of the animals are made to feel pain without being given anything to reduce it.
  • Although some of this pain was slight like getting an injection with a needle- some was extremely severe.

Is it necessary?

  • EpiDerm, an in vitro test derived from cultured human cells, was found to be more accurate in identifying chemical irritations then the animal tests.
  • In comparison, studies show that EpiDerm correctly detected all of the tests chemicals that irritate the human skin, while tests on rabbits mis-classified 10 out of 25 test chemicals- a full 40% error rate.
  • The Lethal Dose 50, (LD50) test forces animals to ingest toxic and lethal substances to the endpoint of where 50% of the animals die. Those who survive are later killed. The late Dr. Bjorn Ekwall (Cytotoxicology Laboratory in Sweden) developed a replacement for the LD50 test that measured toxicity at a precision rate of 77-84% accuracy compared to the LD50 with a rate of 52-60%. This test, far more accurate than the animal models, uses donated human tissue rather than animal.