Should Animals Be Used in Medical Research?
Nowadays, there is ongoing research that made it possible to improve the life quality of those suffering from diseases like cancer and increase their life expectancy. Unfortunately, in order to make sure medicine is efficient, it is often tested on animals. Not only it is an extremely cruel practice, but it is also believed to give inaccurate results. In this case, should animals be used in medical research or should this method be universally banned?
Medicine is usually tested on animals to measure its toxic effects and allergic reactions. It is believed that animal cells act like human ones under the impact of drugs against cancer. According to Dr. David Scott from Cancer Research UK, “studies using animals have underpinned virtually all the progress that has been made in understanding and treating cancer over the past century, from giving clues to causes of the disease to showing us the best ways to treat it.” However, to cut down the costs on experimentation, researchers try to minimize the number of animals used, which leads to inaccuracy. “These unreliable results mean the lives of the animals involved have been wasted, along with scientists’ time and resources. The over-use of animals in experiments has also led to unnecessary loss of their lives” (McKie).
PETA activists claim that “most experiments on animals are not relevant to human health, they do not contribute meaningfully to medical advances, and many are undertaken simply out of curiosity and do not even pretend to hold promise for curing illnesses” (“Animal Testing Is Bad Science”). They substantiate their assertion by saying that humans and animals are way too dissimilar and even test results among different animal species can vary, therefore cannot be considered universal.
Consequently, animal testing appears to be a method of high price and dubious value. The number of animals dying during medical experimentation is overwhelming, and the ways their lives are taken are truly savage. Therefore, it would be a good idea to elaborate alternative methods not to torture the weaker ones in vain.
- Scott, David. “Scientists Told to Stop Wasting Animal Lives.” Cancer Research UK, 21 June 2011, http://scienceblog.cancerresearchuk.org/2011/06/21/animal-research-is-helping-us-beat-cancer/.
- McKie, Robin. “Scientists Told to Stop Wasting Animal Lives.” The Guardian, 19 Apr. 2015, https://www.theguardian.com/science/2015/apr/18/animal-lives-wasted-in-drugs-safety-tests.
- “Animal Testing Is Bad Science: Point/Counterpoint.” PETA, https://www.peta.org/issues/animals-used-for-experimentation/animal-testing-bad-science/. Accessed 5 Mar. 2018.
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