Animal Testing - Approaching the "End of an Error"
It's only a proposal at the moment, but it's going in the right direction.
Toxicity tests will start being done using human cells in laboratories, robots, and computer modeling - and this means saving countless of animal lifes!
From the scientists point of view the decision is based on the fact that "new technology has made testing chemicals much faster and more accurate",
so even if a "commercial based decision", nevertheless it goes on favour of the animals. The real big news would have been if this conclusion was approached because of a new compassionate consciousness being born amongst the scientific world.... but hey - as long as there's a positive outcome for the animals, that's pretty fine with me!
The End of Animal Testing for Chemical & Drug Safety Could be in Sight
According to an USA Today article released on the 14th of February a new program announced by a coalition of three government agencies - the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the National Toxicology Program and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) - could lead to the end of animal testing to evaluate the safety for humans of new chemicals and drugs.
These agencies have signed a "Memorandum of Understanding" to develop and implement the new methods. Historically, toxicity has been identified by injecting chemicals into animals and seeing whether they were harmed. According to the director of the NIH's National Genome Research Institute, Francis Collins, "It was expensive, time-consuming, used animals in large numbers, and it didn't always work."
The agencies acknowledge that full implementation of the shift in toxicity testing could take years because it will require scientific validation of the new approaches.
The new systems the agencies hope to use rely on human cells grown in test tubes and computer-driven testing machines. They allow the scientists to examine potentially toxic compounds in the lab rather than injecting them into animals.
All the data produced will be put into a public database.
Read more on the following links:
- "USA Today" article
- "Science" journal article
- "Medicine.net" article
- NIH press release
- European Coalition to End Animal Experiments
- The Daily Green - End of Animal Testing is Near
- PETA Files - Three Government Agencies to End Animal Testing?
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