Should Animals be used for Scientific or Commercial Testing?
by Jasmine P. on September 12, 2016 - 8:31pm
Animal testing is a very controversial topic in this modern age. According to the advocates in favor of animal testing, there is a belief that animal testing enables the development of life-saving treatments and advances the development of many other fields in sciences, most notably medicine. In contrary, there are advocates against animal testing that claim it is an unnecessary, cruel and inhumane method used that can be altered. Of course, there is many ways to look into this issue and a wide-range of arguments in favor and against animal testing. In the article “Should animals be used for scientific or commercial testing?” by ProCon.org, arguments are presented on both sides of this debatable topics and explored.
As said earlier, advocates in favor claim that animal testing greatly contributed to the development of many cures and treatments for conditions such as breast cancer, childhood leukemia, malaria, and tuberculosis. In addition to that, they believe there is no other adequate alternative to test on a living, whole-body system. The living systems of human beings and animals are extremely complex and cannot be adequately tested on cell cultures in a petri dish like the opposing view claims. According to those in favor of animal testing, to evaluate a drug side effects it requires a circulatory system to carry the medicine to different organs of the body. Not only that but certain conditions like blindness cannot be studied in tissue cultures.
Moreover, those against animal testing believe the results are irrelevant for most cases because animals are very different from human beings and make poor test subjects. For them, using cell cultures in petri dish generates results that are more relevant since it can be tested on artificial human cells. Not only that, but computer models can virtually reconstruct the human molecular structures to predict the toxicity of substances. Both methods proposed would limit any casualties for animals if a product goes wrong and it could potentially stop animal testing.
Of course, those in favor counter that argument by claiming that not only do human beings share approximately 98% DNA with mice’s and 99% DNA with chimpanzees but that computer models can only be reliable if accurate information is collected from animal research to build the models in the first place. In addition, the technology of today still does not simulate organs such as the brain and therefore cannot be used.
Lastly, those in favor of animal testing believe that regulations are already in place and are already preventing as much as possible the mistreatment of animals in laboratories. As usual, those against animal testing counter it by saying that it does not do enough and more can be done.
In my opinion, I believe both opinions are right and wrong. As much as I like the idea of having a world free of animal testing, I also know it is not yet possible. One of my principles is to act in accordance with my own best interest and human life is fundamentally valuable. Therefore, having a cure or a treatment being developed for breast cancer or any wide-spread diseases that I have high chances of having in the future, it fits my principles. Though I do believe more can be done regarding the regulations for animal testing and that new method should be innovated and funded.
ProCon. “Should Animals be used for Scientific or Commercial Testing?” ProCon.org. 2016. Web. 13 Sept. 2016.