Technology Animal Testing Pros and Cons List of 8 Facts to Consider Animal testing is a process in which small animals like rats, mice, rabbits, pigs, dogs etc. This is a regular practice in drug development and other areas of scientific research. It is widely used in areas of pharmacologicalbio-medical and biological research which needs an alternative to humans body. Since one does not know the toxic effects and tolerable doses of new drugs, animal testing is done to ascertain them before use on humans.
About 85 percent of these animals are rats and mice. These tiny, furry creatures have been one of the go-to animals for biomedical researchers around the world for studies relating to everything from cancer to the effects of space travel on the human body.
The scientific community is well aware of the invaluable role these rodents have played in the development of modern medicine and the lengthening of the average human lifespan from just 40 years at the turn of the 20th century to over 70 years today.
Monument to lab mouse in Novosibirsk, Russia. The statue depicts a mouse in a lab coat and glasses, knitting the DNA double helix. The bronze monument was erected the following year. Also in Russia, is this monument. As you can probably see, the animal is pretty odd looking.
The males have long hairs, up to a foot long, on their shoulders that hang like a cloak covering their upper body. The baboon is depicted sitting on a pedestal, on which are carved the names of human diseases studied and defeated thanks to the experiments on monkeys.
The baboon monument is located on the campus of the Scientific Research Institute of Experimental Pathology and Therapy, in Sukhumi, a city on the coast of the Black Sea.
It was erected in on occasion of the 50th founding anniversary of the monkey nursery at the institute. Eight monkey astronauts from the nursery have made it to orbit. The monkey nursery is also renowned for the testing of vaccines for polio, measles, hepatitis, and for new antibiotics and drugs for many other diseases.
At its peak the nursery had about 5, monkeys, but now it has only around African and Asian monkeys. Several universities and research institutes in countries of the former Soviet Union have monuments dedicated to animals. This monument of a sad-looking dog can be seen at the entrance to the Grodno Medical University, in Belarus.
The plaque attached to the large boulder carries the inscription: Dogs are often used in dental research for carrying of studies such as bone healing, dental caries, dental materials, growth studies, oral cancer, etc. Pavlov was researching on the physiology of digestion in dogs when he noticed that the dogs would salivate whenever they saw the technician who fed them.
Pavlov called the dogs' anticipatory salivation "psychic secretion". After more tests, Pavlov concluded that if a particular stimulus in the dog's surroundings was present when the dog was given food then that stimulus could become associated with food and cause salivation on its own.
Previously, most experiments with dogs involved vivisection—the practice of performing operations on live animals—which was extremely traumatic and painful for the animals and always resulted in deaths.
Pavlov, on the other hand, was interested in observing long-term physiological processes which required keeping the dogs alive and healthy.
His laboratory housed a full-scale kennel and his experiments ran for several weeks. An anonymous brown dog was subjected, over the course of several months, to repeated live surgeries during which the dog was cut open and his pancreas removed, and for the next two months, confined to a cage where it howled and whined in pain.
Seventy five years later, a new memorial was placed bearing the same inscription as the original, which is: Also in Memory of the dogs Vivisected at the same place during the year Men and Women of England how long shall these Things be?
Laika was a stray dog found on the streets of Moscow, chosen because Soviet scientists thought that Moscow strays are already well endured to conditions of extreme cold and hunger. In preparation for the flight, Laika, along with the other dogs, were kept in tiny cages for weeks on end in order to adapt them to the confines of the tiny cabin of the spacecraft.
They were spun around in centrifuges and subjected to simulated noises of the spacecraft. The traumatic experience made many dogs to give up urinating or defecating altogether.
When she was finally launched into orbit, a failure in the thermal system caused the cabin to overheat killing Laika within hours of the flight. The Soviet government instead claimed that she died when her oxygen ran out on day six.
The statue is located at the military research facility in Moscow where staff had been responsible for readying Laika for the flight.In clinical testing laboratories, animals are isolated from their groups and used as a tool irrespective of their natural instincts.
For the experimental procedures, either a whole animal or its organs and tissues are used. In the US and the EU, a drug’s efficacy and safety must be tested in animals before it enters human testing, though a directive from the EU calls for alternatives to be used when possible.
It is the policy of The University of Texas at Austin (“University”) to assure the care and use of animals for University research, teaching, and testing activities is done in accordance with applicable federal and state laws or regulations.
According to the Animal Welfare Act (AWA), animals that are used in testing are owed proper housing, treatment, veterinary care, food and water. However, a vast majority of animals used in research are excluded from the protections provided for in the AWA as a result of the Farm Security Act of Millions of cats, dogs, rabbits, mice and other animals are still poisoned, burned and killed each year for cruel and unnecessary consumer animal tests.
What types of animals are used? Many different species are used around the world, but the most common include mice, fish, rats, rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters, farm animals, birds, cats, dogs, mini-pigs, and non-human primates (monkeys, and in some countries, chimpanzees).
Video: Watch what scientists have to say about alternatives to animal testing.