Animal welfare view
Animal rights groups on the whole object to all animal testing and many advocate that the results of the testing are unreliable, and that all experiments could be replaced with non-animal testing methods.
Many argue that scientists automatically opt to use animals in trials rather than seeking out non-animal alternatives, and that this mindset needs to change.
They campaign to modernise parts of the legislation governing animal testing arguing that it is out dated.
Science has never had to prove that animal testing works, yet there is a scientific and legal demand to prove that alternatives do work.
Animal rights groups want to see animals being regarded as sentient beings instead of tools for research.
There is also concern about the rise in use of animals in genetic manipulation and cloning.
The pharmaceutical and scientific community focus on developing new medicines that are effective in humans, and that deliver the expected result with identified side effects before they get a licence to produce and go to market.
The scientific community argues that even though animal testing doesn’t always deliver perfect results with 100% accuracy, it’s still the only way to do invasive research to understand living systems and to provide the best possible assurance of the effects of new medicines.
In the new Lisbon treaty animals have been given rights as sentient beings, and it’s now a legal requirement not to use animals where there’s an alternative.
European and national legislation demands all medicines are tested in animals before they can be tested in humans.
Some medicines and vaccines must be tested on animals for every batch. These tend to be medicines that are made of, or derived from a live product – such as botox, polio vaccine etc.
The current regulation 86/609 has been revised and now provides further protection for animals. The new legislation, Directive 2010/63 will take effect in member states on 1st January 2013.