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Is animal testing ethical? Show more Show less
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The ethics of animal experimentation is a topic of hot debate in academia. Animal rights groups consider animal testing unethical due to the harm inflicted on animals. The other side of the debate justifies the harm because animal testing will bring greater benefits to the world.

Animal testing is unethical Show more Show less

The use of animals in research is ethically wrong because of the harm inflicted on animals. The supposed benefits of animal experimentation cannot justify this harm. Testing is forced upon animals by disregarding their rights.
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Animal testing is unreliable and unnecessary

The findings of animal experimentation are not reliable and conclusive. Since animal testing does not have substantial benefits to humans, it is morally wrong to inflict harm on animals. Other experimental methods can be used to produce more reliable results without causing harm to any species.

The Argument

The findings of animal studies are unreliable. An article published in the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine has concluded that animal experimentation does not contribute to the advancement of scientific knowledge in any way. Most experiments on animals are not relevant to human health. Many are undertaken out of curiosity and do not even pretend to hold promise for curing illnesses. The media, experimenters, and lobbying groups exaggerate the potential of animal studies in finding new cures. They mislead people to think that animal studies have a human benefit.[1] Another related argument is that because animal tests are unreliable, they make those human trials all the riskier. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has noted that 95 percent of all drugs that are shown to be safe and effective in animal tests fail in human trials.[1] Similarly, a 2015 study conducted by neurologist Aysha Akhtar demonstrated that animal studies lack reliability and predictive value for human outcomes and for understanding human physiology. She also found that animal experimentation significantly harms humans through misleading safety studies, potential abandonment of effective therapeutics, and the direction of resources away from more effective testing methods. Overall, the study suggests that the collective harms and costs to humans from animal experimentation outweigh potential benefits. Resources would be better invested in developing human-based testing methods.[2] Because animal experimentation does not have a substantial human benefit and harms humans, it is not ethical to use animals for research purposes.

Counter arguments

Animal research has been important in the development of many major medical advances. Millions of lives were saved as a result. For example, asthma inhalers were developed after work on guinea pigs and frogs. One in 10 children currently receives asthma treatment. Similarly, heart and kidney transplant techniques, plus vital anti-rejection medication, were developed using animals. In 2009–2010, 3,700 people received major organ transplants.[3] Another example of human benefit from animal research is polio. As a result of the acquisition of information and the development of techniques achieved through the use of animals, poliomyelitis is no longer a major threat to health in the United States. The number of paralytic polio cases in the United States has declined as a result of vaccinations from 58,000 in 1952 to only 4 in 1984.[4] These examples are enough to claim that animal experimentation greatly contributes to the advancement of science and, therefore, benefits humans.



Rejecting the premises


This page was last edited on Wednesday, 14 Oct 2020 at 21:16 UTC

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