Laboratory Use Of Living Organisms Essay

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Laboratory Use of Living Organisms
Numerous people, especially people who do not work in the research or medical field, would be against the use of living organisms in the laboratories. However, the main reason why it is necessary to use living organisms in laboratories is so that researchers could learn more about animals, and as a result help discover new ways to save more human lives. In the long run, helping people at the cost of animals seems to be worth it (Sztybel 2006). One of the major reasons for the use of living organisms in the laboratory is that there are not many alternatives that could help future professional biologists learn as much as they do with living organisms. Learning from pictures in the textbook is not the same as using living organisms and actually seeing the anatomy and working with their body parts. Experiments with monkeys have already been able to provide answers and cures for some diseases and illnesses (Anonymous 2006). Therefore, it is necessary for future biologists to use living organisms in the laboratory in order to learn how different parts operate and which body parts cause what illness. For teaching laboratories it is not necessary to use animals, such as monkeys since the experiments are for learning purposes, and not research on a particular topic. The main problem that people have with the use of living organisms in laboratories is that in certain experiments organisms are purposely harmed (Sztybel 2006). However, in teaching laboratories, the organisms do not usually experience the same extreme suffering as the animals that are used for particular research. And one other way to justify the use of living organisms is knowing that such use will certainly result in learning something that will be useful in the future (Sztybel 2006). One alternative that has been brought up is the use of humans, who undergo changes that no longer allow them to lead a normal life and deprive them of capabilities of a normal human being; in other words, humans who are on the same mental level as animals (Sztybel 2006). However, of course this alternative would not be suitable in teaching laboratories for future biologists. There is also another option, which is called the 3R approach, where the three R’s stand for refine, reduce, and replace. (Frey 2002). In the case of a teaching laboratory, some of these options could work, such as reducing the amount of living organisms used by working in groups instead of working individually, and also refining some experiments where the use of living organisms is not necessary.