May 26, 2013
Pharmaceutical Testing in the Industry Animal rights have been protected since 1959 under the three R’s of humane animal experimentation. Most recently, according to the Foundation of Biomedical Research, the USDA has set forth federal regulations governing the care and use of animals in biomedical research that are considered more extensive than those covering human research subjects. This action clearly demonstrates that the pressures brought about by organizations such as People for the Ethical Treatments of Animals (PETA) and the moral issues regarding the pain and suffering of animals are leading to more strict regulations on animal testing. But, should this provide enough justification to stop animal testing for scientific advancement and human development? Therefore, pharmaceutical testing using animals should continue because it produces superior results over other methods and it saves both human and animal life.
Animal testing has existed since the second and third centuries B.C.E. according to the Northwest Association for Biomedical Research (NWABR), and has continued on since then. Without animal or human test subjects, the field of science would not be where it is today. According to The History Of Animal Research by the NWABR in 1764 “French philosopher François-Marie Arouet de Voltaire noted that vivisection uncovered organs of feeling in animals, proving that animals were not machines, but feeling beings. Vivisection is surgery conducted for experimental purposes on a living organism to view living internal structures.” Without the animal test subjects that the French Philosopher used, the understanding that animals feel pain may not have been discovered. And that organizations fighting for animal rights against animal testing may not even have had evidence of animal emotion or cognitive thinking without the scientific testing. PETA is an animal rights organization that was founded by Ingrid Newkirk in 1980 (H. of P.E.T.A). It is by far the most famous animal right movement in history, and it is still going strong. According to sites.google.com “P.E.T.A helps unite scientific, judicial, and legislative communities to help stop abusive animal practices.” One of PETAs’ movements revolves around the idea that animals and humans do not share the same physiological systems, and that they are not genetically similar. Petaasiapacific.com, an Asian Pacific part of PETA, produced an article entitled Animals Are Not Ours To Experiment On, and clearly stating: “Testing products and procedures on animals to see if they can work on humans is like trying to find your way around Tokyo armed with a map of Beijing. Granted, there are similarities between the cities: Both have roads, buildings, and other infrastructures— but they are different roads, buildings, and infrastructures, and the cities are governed by different laws and have different traffic codes. Similarly, the physiological differences between humans and other animals prevent the results of animal tests from being accurately extrapolated to humans.” (A.a.n.o.t.t.o) However, this concept is incorrect, because the history of science is based on evidence that relied on both human and animal testing. Granted there are differences between humans and animals, but through experimentation we can extrapolate theories of how it will affect the human body. Scientists have applied that reasoning within most if not all of pharmaceutical drugs. Additionally, if what PETA is saying was based on facts, then why is the world still producing pharmaceutical drugs that are affective on humans as well as animals that still rely on animal testing? It is the year 2013, and animal testing is still the most effective method of pharmaceutical testing. Scientists must continue to use animals for testing. The one and only reason behind that fact is that we