Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Animal Testing Updates

Victory! More Animals Saved From Pesticide Testing

In yet another major milestone for animals, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced its commitment to reducing the number of animals who suffer in pesticide testing along with the steps that it intends to take to accomplish that goal. The agency issued guidance on the use of non-animal methods and plans to stop requiring that animals be used in tests that subject them to painful irritation and death caused by toxic chemicals absorbed through the skin. It is also exploring ways in which its pesticide testing and classification system can be changed to align with those of other countries, thus ensuring that pesticide companies using non-animal tests in one country won’t have to perform animal tests in another.
Laboratory mouse animal experiments
This announcement is the result of a partnership among PETA’s scientists, the EPA, industry representatives, and other stakeholders whose goal is to find ways to allow the pesticide industry to submit data from non-animal tests instead of requiring that lethal toxicity tests be performed on animals. PETA will continue to work with the agency to replace all animal tests with humane non-animal approaches.

The EPA isn’t alone in its progress. Earlier this month, following discussions with PETA’s scientists, Health Canada stated that it would end its requirement that year-long tests on dogs be conducted by industry to study pesticide effects. Dogs used in these cruel tests were forced to eat pesticide-laced food or inhale pesticide fumes every day for a year before being killed and dissected. PETA provided evidence that these poisoning tests do not produce data that protect humans. PETA campaigned against these tests in the U.S., and they were ended in 2007.

The discussions with Health Canada began in May 2014. Agency staff acknowledged PETA’s role in focusing attention on the issue and providing information that contributed to this informed, lifesaving decision.

PETA estimates that Canada’s decision will spare hundreds of dogs the ordeal of undergoing these extremely painful and deadly tests. PETA continues to urge Japan and South Korea—which still require the test—to follow the lead of the U.S., the European Union, Canada, and other countries that have made the humane and progressive decision to end year-long pesticide testing on dogs. Of course, we will also keep working to get dogs and other animals out of all pesticide testing, so stay tuned for updates.

Dogs Spared the Misery of Pesticide Testing
After corresponding with PETA, regulatory bodies in countries throughout the world are working to change their requirements that dogs be fed pesticides for a full year in painful and deadly toxicity tests.
Cute Beagle Dog at PETA Spayathon 2014
Until recently, most countries required one-year tests in dogs to study the toxicity of pesticides. The dogs are forced to ingest pesticides daily then are killed and dissected. But these cruel year-long tests have been going on for years, and there is an extensive database of results showing that they are of no use. So PETA has been working with government regulatory agencies across the globe to eliminate them wherever possible.

And we’re making great strides. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the European Union eliminated the one-year test, and Brazil is asking for public comment on eliminating it as well. Australia will allow companies to waive it, and India and China do not require it. Japan, South Korea, and Canada have agreed to reconsider their regulations.

Next, PETA plans to work with Russia, Turkey, and countries in Southeast Asia.
guinea pigs
What You Can Do
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) currently requires companies that manufacture drugs and other pharmaceutical products to test their products on animals in painful experiments. Please ask the FDA to accept superior non-animal methods in place of cruel tests on animals.

Urge the FDA to End Painful Tests on Animals

Monkeys used for experiments
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) currently requires companies that sell drugs and other pharmaceutical products to first test their products on animals in cruel and painful experiments. Thousands of mice, rats, rabbits, dogs, and monkeys are killed in preclinical poisoning tests. In these tests, animals are forced to swallow or inhale massive doses of a test substance—which can cause severe abdominal pain, paralysis, convulsions, seizures, and bleeding from the nose, mouth and genitals—before they are killed by experimenters.

Shockingly, the FDA acknowledges that 92 out of every 100 drugs that successfully pass these crude animal tests fail or cause harm during human clinical trials. In spite of this intolerable failure rate, the FDA continues to require that companies carry out painful and deadly tests on animals.

Reliable non-animal testing methods are available, and many more are being developed. Using non-animal tests will produce safer and more effective drugs and reduce the cost of bringing drugs to market.

Please ask the FDA to accept superior non-animal methods in place of archaic and unreliable animal tests.



The phone booth. The 8-track tape. The typewriter. The fax machine. The lab rat. 

What do they have in common? They're all outdated. 

New advances in technology have opened up a world of possibilities for alternatives, such as one of the latest: 'mini-brains, 'made of human neurons and cells, which could radically change how drugs are tested, and replace animals for neurological scientific research. 

Thanks to you, AAVS's affiliate, the Alternatives Research & Development Foundation (ARDF) helped to fund the development of the mini-brain, which is not only more ethical, but also likely to yield more accurate data. 

Will you invest in alternatives with a contribution to AAVS today? 

With research funding reduced by government budgetary limitations, scientists are seeking new approaches. ARDF is working to direct their energies to alternatives instead of animals. Ensuring rapid adoption of new, non-animal methods is our top priority. 

When our scientific advisors are reviewing grant proposals this May, I want to assure them that ARDF has funding available for all deserving projects. I hope you will consider a special contribution to help make that happen. 


Thank you for being part of this movement for humane science that is helping animals instead of hurting them.