Most of us in this room have probably not suffered from a debilitating illness or a life-threatening disease. But maybe you know of someone who has. Has either of your parents or grandparents been diagnosed with cancer, heart disease, diabetes, or some other illness? Has someone you know had surgery, chemotherapy, or a drug treatment? Both of my grandmothers died from cancer; my grandfather had heart disease; my great-uncle suffered from Parkinson’s disease for 20 years and participated in all kinds of experimental treatments. My 16-year-old brother has a friend who is currently undergoing a bone-marrow transplant in Boston for leukemia. And I’m sure all of you are aware that Michael J. Fox and Mohammed Ali suffer from Parkinson’s disease and that Christopher Reeves is paralyzed with a spinal cord injury. No matter where we live or who we are, illness and disease affect us all. In order to develop cures and treatments for the illnesses and diseases that exist in our world, scientists conduct research and experiments. This research is presently under attack because these experiments involve the use of many different animals. Today, animal-rights groups want to ban the use of animals in scientific testing. They cla
No computer model or cell culture can simulate flesh, muscle, blood, bones, and organs working together in a living system. Their motto is "Animals are not ours to eat, wear, experiment on or use for entertainment. Everett Koop was quoted by the Americans for Medical Progress Educational Foundation on the internet as saying, "We would be in utter darkness about AIDS if we hadn"tmt done decades of basic research in animal retroviruses. " And according to the GLAA, "Animal research is essential to progress in the study, treatment and prevention of HIVAIDS, including the development of new approaches that may ultimately lead to a cure. Many animal-rights activists believe that animals deserve the same right to life as humans and deserve the same respect. Critics of animal research declare in Facts on File on the web that ""animal studies are an example of "bad science"tm---animals and humans are quite different biologically and data obtained from animals does not always apply to humans. One of the most influential animal-rights groups is PETA, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. Every day, all around the world, millions of people with HIVAIDS hope that advances in scientific research will save their lives. Facilities that use animals covered by the Animal Welfare Act must register with the USDA"tms Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and be inspected by it. For example, testing a drug on isolated tissues or organs will not show how a drug affects the whole body. Also, when developing compounds to treat HIVAIDS, many appeared promising in computer models and in test-tubes, but they proved to be extremely toxic in animals. Animal research might one day save my life, your life, or someone close to you. (time-line)In addition, the American Physiological Society supports the humane use of animals in medical research, claiming that the research benefits both humans and animals and that only animal studies can answer certain questions. The APS says, "Animal research is the most humane response to human suffering from disease" and that "depriving sick human beings of the benefits of animal research is inhumane and reprehensible. " They feel that since animals differ from humans in certain biological aspects, then the results of animal studies might be misleading when applied to humans.
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