Animal Defenders International

 

Animal Defenders International

During Lab Animal Week, ADI Highlights Lack of Science Behind Suffering

Posted: 15 April 2011. Updated: 15 April 2011

LOS ANGELES 15th April, 2011 –To tie in with the launch of Worldwide Laboratory Animal Week (17 – 24 April 2011), Animal Defenders International (ADI) would like to remind the US public of the pitfalls of animal experimentation and inform them of the sophisticated alternatives now available, including cutting edge human based alternatives to animal research.

This week of action is to commemorate the suffering of the one hundred million animals that are tortured, mutilated and killed in laboratories all around the world each year and to raise awareness that laboratory animal research is both cruel, and bad science.

According to the latest US statistics, nearly one million animals were tortured, mutilated and killed in US laboratories in 2009. Animals are only counted once, regardless of the number of times they are used and of similar concern is the fact that two of the most frequently used species in laboratories- rats and mice – are not even recorded in the US. So, the actual figures for animals used in US labs will be significantly higher than those published.

Jan Creamer, President of ADI said: “ADI is dedicated to bringing attention to the cruel, wasteful and unnecessary experiments performed on these defenseless animals and want people to reflect on their suffering during this week. Every year in the US millions of animals suffer and die in experiments needlessly that can never be trusted for research purposes.

“The fundamental flaw of animal research is that each species responds differently to substances, making animal tests unreliable as a way to predict effects in humans. Yet animal research can be replaced by advanced scientific techniques that are quicker, more cost effective and more reliable.

“ADI is calling on US Citizens to spare a thought for the millions of animals currently suffering and languishing in laboratories the length and breadth of the USA and is calling on Congress to include all animals used in experiments in the figures so that we get a true picture.

In addition, we also call for an end on cosmetics and household products testing on animals and regulations to ensure that where there is an alternative available, then it must be used.”

There are many alternatives to the use of animals which are more reliable and are based on better science. These include tissue and cell cultures, computer modelling and analysis, as well as epidemiological studies of human disease, transmission, genetics and environmental factors. These types of studies have been successful in the past, for example showing the link between smoking and cancer. Also, scientists are developing advanced non-animal techniques which are becoming increasingly sophisticated, such as 3D models containing different tissues providing a better representation of the actual situation in a living human. These cultures can be used for drug testing and to study cell mechanisms.

Matt Rossell, ADI’s Campaigns Director said: “Animal experiments are unreliable, unethical, unnecessary, and the misleading results have even harmed human health. Alternative methods can provide robust, relevant and accurate results faster and more cost effectively, without animal suffering. Contrary to what you might be told by animal experimenters, the majority of medical and scientific research does not involve animals. Today there is a wealth of sophisticated techniques including computer modelling, tissue cultures, epidemiological studies and clinical studies, all of which have direct relevance to people. And, there is a long history of medical progress without the use of animals.”

For more information about laboratory animals, and the alternatives, and how you can help, please visit: http://www.adiusa.org, or email: usa@ad-international.org, telephone 001 323 935 2234.

Creamer said: “This campaign for Lab Animal Week clearly outlines the flaws of animal experimentation and promotes the benefits of non invasive, ground breaking advanced non-animal testing techniques. Let’s push forward the development and adoption of sophisticated scientific techniques to replace out of date animal tests, decrease the use of animals in animal tests and show a determination and will to replace animal use with advanced, non-animal techniques.”

ENDS

NOTES TO EDITORS:
For further information please contact: ADI Campaigns Director, Matt Rossell, Tel: 323-804-9920, email mattrossell@ad-international.org or Agnes Huff, PhD, tel: 310-641-2525 or ahuff@ahuffgroup.com

In the USA, The Animal Welfare Act defines an “animal” as “any live or dead dog, cat, nonhuman primate, guinea pig, hamster, rabbit, or any other warmblooded animal, which is being used, or is intended for use for research, teaching, testing, experimentation, or exhibition purposes, or as a pet. This term excludes birds, rats of the genus Rattus, and mice of the genus Mus, bred for use in research”. Therefore not all animals would be recorded in statistics of animal use. .” http://www.aphis.usda.gov/animal_welfare/downloads/awr/awr.pdf - accessed 14/04/11

According to the latest statistics for the fiscal year 2009, a total of 979,772 animals were used. http://www.aphis.usda.gov/animal_welfare/efoia/downloads/2009_Animals_Used_In_Research.pdf - accessed 14/4/11.

Animals are only counted once, regardless of the number of protocols in which they are used. Animals used over numerous years are counted once in each fiscal year. http://www.aphis.usda.gov/animal_welfare/downloads/policy/policy17.pdf - accessed 14/4/11

About Animal Defenders International
With offices in Los Angeles, London and Bogotá, Animal Defenders International campaigns to protect animals in entertainment; replacement of animals in experiments; worldwide traffic in endangered species; vegetarianism; factory farming; pollution and conservation. ADI also rescues animals in distress worldwide. ADI-gathered evidence has led to campaigns and legislative action all over the world to protect them.

ADI’s Mission
To educate, create awareness, and promote the interest of humanity in the cause of justice, and the suppression of all forms of cruelty to animals wherever possible to alleviate suffering, and to conserve and protect animals and the environment.

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Animal Defenders International
6100 Wilshire Blvd., #1150, Los Angeles, CA 90048.
Tel: 323-935 2234. Fax: 323-935-9234.


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