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Animal Testing.

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Introduction

Animal Testing Every week thousands of animals are slaughtered for medical research. However, many thousands of people are also saved every week as a result of the research. Animal testing is carried out on amphibians, cats, dogs, domestic birds, farm animals, fish, fur animals, gerbils, guinea pigs, hamsters, marine mammals, mice, miniature swine, non-human primates, rabbits, rats and reptiles. In the year two thousand alone, an estimated one million nine hundred and fifty-four thousand and fifty-nine animals were used for animal testing. As a result of the research carried out on animals over the past century, insulin, a treatment for whooping cough, a prevention of polio and many other cures, drugs and preventions were discovered. In December of the year two thousand and three the government gave Cambridge University permission to build a monkey laboratory where scientists will study brain disorders such as autism and Alzheimer's disease. The animal rights movement vowed to fight the project every step of the way. They believed that it was a waste of animals' lives, and for what? ...read more.

Middle

Many people also say that we cannot rely on other countries to carry out an experiment; each country wants to be finding out a way to cure a disease that may be killing many of its people. Scientists also say that the number of animals used in medical research is dropping. This is because researchers are able to rely on computer models and other methods rather than animal testing. Some estimates show a reduction in animal use as high as fifty percent. Consequently, it is often asked why computer models and other options are not always used instead of wasting many animals' lives. There are many alternatives to animal testing: in-vitro tests, computer software and databases of tests already done and even human clinical trial tests. Eytex is an example of an in-vitro test, which measures eye irritancy. This is an alternative to an otherwise very cruel eye irratancy test. That involves an animal having products rubbed into its eyes to see if it will irritate them. Epi-pack is a human clone tissue test for harmful substances. ...read more.

Conclusion

Overall, the reason that most people object to animal testing is the cruelty and pain that the animal has to suffer. Many animals are kept in small cages all their lives. Would you like to be kept in a cage only to be taken out to have poisons and irritants rubbed in your eyes and pushed down your throat? Why, if a person can be sent to prison for extreme cases of animal cruelty, is the cruelty carried out by medical researchers still legal? Scientists disagree with this; they say that animals are not treated badly. They say that this would never happen because laws such as the animal welfare law prevent such cruelty. In addition, a well treated animal, one without disease or pain, will provide more reliable scientific results, the goal of all researchers. In conclusion, although I believe that animal welfare should always be considered, in the end, it comes down to the question: if your mother or father was lying in a hospital bed, dying, who would you rather save - an animal or a human? Isabelle Hawker 12th February 2004 ...read more.

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