Animal Aid

BRED TO SUFFER - Damning new report

Posted 1 December 2001
A monkey

Our new report, Bred to Suffer, explains how animals are used in biomedical research as 'models' of human disease. Written by Animal Aid science researcher, Kathy Archibald, it details how the diseases are induced - either physically (for example, by blocking blood vessels to simulate a stroke or heart attack) - or genetically.

With examples from recent scientific literature, the report goes on to explain how a range of human diseases are studied in animals. We then show how the same disorder could more relevantly be studied in people or their tissues. Time and time again, it becomes clear that using animals as surrogate humans is scientifically invalid and compromises human welfare - in addition to the alarming cruelty it causes.

Bred to Suffer also exposes the myth that animal testing is vital in establishing the safety of medicines. No non-human species can predict toxicity for people, as proved by the massive problems of drug side effects. Adverse reactions to prescription medicines is now the fourth biggest cause of death in the USA. It also accounts for 70,000 deaths every year in the UK. While animal testing cannot be blamed for all of these lost lives, medicines would certainly be far safer if animal tests were eliminated and replaced by sophisticated in vitro (test tube) studies and other scientifically validated methods.

The report demonstrates how animal experiments indirectly cost an even greater number of lives than those killed by unsafe medicines. This is because vast resources that could be spent profitably on human-based research are criminally squandered on an outdated and unscientific practice. Rather than the 'necessary evil' its proponents claim it to be, vivisection remains a massive obstacle to medical progress.

Action

  • For a full list of reports and factfiles available from Animal Aid see our resources list.

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