Using Animals In Research:Pros And ConsThis print version free essay Using Animals In Research:Pros And Cons.
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Using Animals in Research :
Pros and Cons
Using Animals in Research:
A Review of Necessity
Over the last century, little has changed in the debate of using animals for research
purposes.Some people believe that it is a cruel and inhumane practice. While others
believe animal research is needed to advance, especially in the medical field. There is
also a grey area of which most people, including researchers belong. The people in
this grey area usually have contradictory ideas regarding animals in research. In helping
to form our own opinion, we should address the following questions:
1. Is animal research necessary?
2. Are tests done on animals, such as drug interactions, proved to have the same
effects on humans?
3. Are there any alternatives to using animals in research?
In the past, animal research has played a major role in the advancement of medical
treatment. The French chemist Louis Pastiur studied infectious diseases in animals and
found that these diseases derived from external microorganisms. Pastiur proved through
these experiments that a vaccine to prevent these diseases could be produced. It's
breakthroughs like this that have people believing that animal research is necessary. I
believe that this is not the case.
Despite years of animal research, diseases such as cancer has provided no cure.Many of our medical discoveries such ad antibiotics, CAT scans, aspirin, and anesthetics have
been developed from nonanimal experiments. Nonanimal experiments include automated devices, computers, test tube cultures of cell and tissue cultures, physio-chemical studies,
behavioral studies and postmortem studies on humans. Use of these types of experiments
have proved beneficial not only to humans but also to animals. For example the limes test, a test to see if a substance is carcinogenic, uses a micro-organism culture. This test takes just a few days compared to years on animals, saving many research dollars and sparing over 30,000 animals per year.
Results of many animal experiments have proved different results on humans. Because species are so different, what works on a rat, doesn't mean it will work on a human. For example aspirin causes birth defects in rats and mice, while it acts as a pain reliever for humans. Zipeprol, a cough suppresant, had no effect on animals but caused coma and seizures in humans.
It seems to me that allocated research funds for the study of animals related to psychological experimentation could be better spent. For an example, researchers inflict fears and pain in an animal to see what the animal will do. The animal receives electric shocks until they learn to press a button. Once learned the animal presses the button when shocked. This kind of testing is cruel to the animals involved and has no significance to humans.
I believe the use of non-animal sources provide more accurate results and more cost
effective, this should be the method used. Studies should be focused on programs to work on prevention of diseases, such as heart and lung diseases.
American Psychological Association.(1990) "Ethical principles of psychologists."
American Psychologist. 45, 390-395.
Cohn, David V. " The Life and Times of Louis Pasteur."
Guidelines for Ethical Conduct in the Care and Use of Animals.(APA)
Orlans, FB.Data on animal experimentation in the United States.
Stanovich,K.E.(1991) How to think straight about psychology.
New York:Harper Collins.