Major Doubts in Animal Testing – We are the Guinea Pigs

There are no studies to show how well mice mimic human inflammatory diseases.

This article shows they are similar but correlate poorly. The authors were surprised by the results that showed such weak correlation between the genomic responses in the mouse models and the responses in human injuries; questioning the worldwide use of mice to model human inflammation in testing.

Animal Testing Murine models have been extensively used in recent decades to identify and test drug candidates for subsequent human trials (13). However, few of these human trials have shown success (47). The success rate is even worse for those trials in the field of inflammation, a condition present in many human diseases.

To date, there have been nearly 150 clinical trials testing candidate agents intended to block the inflammatory response in critically ill patients, and every one of these trials failed (811).

There is a better way, but why are we not using it? 

People have been brainwashed to believe animal experiments help humans. Big Pharma owned media, experimenters, big pharma universities, and lobbying groups exaggerate, twist and distort the ideas that new cures and medical advances come from animal testing more often than it actually does.

Neither animals nor two-dimensional cell culture assays are practical for predicting drug toxicity in human cells, notably liver toxicity, but new technology like organs-on-chips and bio-printed tissues has the potential to test the safety of drugs more effectively for a myriad of diseases.

A survey of 4,451 experimental cancer drugs developed between 2003 and 2011 found that more than 93 percent failed after entering the first phase of human clinical trials, even though all had been tested successfully on animals. The authors of this study point out that animal “models” of human cancer created through techniques such as grafting human tumors onto mice can be poor predictors of how a drug will work in humans.

Testing on Mice is a Big Money Making Industry

Many studies have calculated the ability of animal tests to predict adverse reactions to be at or below 50 percent. In 2008, a study in Theriogenology (vol 69, p 2) concluded: “On average, the extrapolated results from studies using tens of millions of animals fail to accurately predict human responses.” And a recent study in Regulatory Toxicology and Pharmacology (vol 64, p 345)

shows that animal tests missed 81 percent of the serious side effects of 43 drugs that went on to harm patients.

Kathy Archibald has been told by the UK Department of Health and the prime minister that “human biology-based tests are not better able to predict adverse drug reactions in humans than animal tests.” Let’s explore this statement and see what the science and scientist says:

Is this one of the reasons Adverse Drug Reactions are so extremely high?

Tt’s now mice that science uses instead of guinea pigs but is this really the best way? Or is it a multi-billion dollar cog of the profit-making machine?

Iatrogenic – I ·at·ro·gen·ic Dictionary result for iatrogenic – adjective

  1. relating to illness caused by medical examination or treatment.
    “drugs may cause side effects, which can lead to iatrogenic disease.”

“Adverse drug reactions (ADR) kill over 100,00 people in the US and 197,000 people annually in the European Union.

Adverse drug reactions are also severely under-reported. Many people are given a drug based upon their new diagnosis, which gives them side effects, and they attribute the side effect to the newly diagnosed disease, hence, underreporting.

The number of deaths caused by conventional medicine is an astronomical 783,936 per year.

Death by medicine is a massive part of the deaths in the doctor industry. Of those deaths, 106,000 people died from Adverse Drug Reactions – $12 billion Lazarou(1), Suh (49)

  1. In 1990, US life expectancy was 71.8 years for men and 78.8 years for women, among the lowest rates in the developed countries.

Conventional medicine is “the leading cause of death” in the United States.

Our estimated 10-year total of 7.8 million iatrogenic deaths is more than all the casualties from all the wars fought by the US throughout its entire history.
Our projected figures for unnecessary medical events occurring over a 10-year period also are dramatic— 164 Million.

Over 700,000 Americans die each year at the hands of government-sanctioned medicine, while the FDA and other government agencies pretend to protect the public by harassing those who offer safe alternatives.

Each year approximately 2.2 million US hospital patients experience adverse drug reactions (ADRs) to prescribed medications. 

In 1981 Steel reported that 36% of hospitalized patients experienced iatrogenesis with a 25% fatality rate, and adverse drug reactions were involved in 50% of the injuries.

The Flaws and Human Harms of Animal Experimentation

Monitoring Editor: TOM L. BEAUCHAMP and DAVID DeGRAZIA, Guest Editors

I show how animal experimentation often significantly harms humans through misleading safety studies, potential abandonment of effective therapeutics, and direction of resources away from more effective testing methods. The resulting evidence suggests that the collective harms and costs to humans from animal experimentation outweigh potential benefits and that resources would be better invested in developing human-based testing methods.

A survey of 4,451 experimental cancer drugs developed between 2003 and 2011 found that more than 93 percent failed after entering the first phase of human clinical trials, even though all had been tested successfully on animals.

The late Judah Folkman, cancer researcher knew that what happens in the laboratory often fails to translate to the bedside. He famously quoted:

“If you have cancer and you are a mouse, we can take good care of you.”

When discussing the new cancer drug Endostatin, as always, the comments were completely exaggerated. ”People were almost overwhelmed,” Dr. Pluda said. ”The data were remarkable.”  It looked good in the mice models but was nowhere near the wonder drug they played it up to be.

Human vs. Monkey Adverse Reactions

A leukemia drug, TGN1412, was tested in monkeys. Monkeys are considered the closest to humans in laboratory models. The drug was very well tolerated in monkies.  Only 1/500th of the dose was then given to six men in the first phase of clinical trials in 2006. The results were drastically different. The men, within hours, were in an intensive care unit with multiple organ failure. They came very close to death.

How human biology can prevent drug deaths

Thousands of people die from the adverse effects of medicines that have been tested on animals. There is a better way, say geneticist Kathy Archibald and pharmacologist Robert Coleman

By Kathy Archibald and Robert Coleman

New tests based on human biology can predict many adverse reactions that animal tests fail to do, and could, for example, have detected the risk signals produced by Vioxx, which in animal studies appeared to be safe, and even beneficial to the heart.

On average, the extrapolated results from studies using tens of millions of animals fail to accurately predict human responses. Inadequacies in experimental designs may account for some of the failures. However, recent discoveries of unexpected variation in genome organization and regulation may reveal a heretofore unknown lack of homology between model animals and target animals that could account for a significant proportion of the weakness in predictive ability.

In its 2007 report, Toxicity Testing in the 21st Century: A Vision and a Strategy, the US National Research Council called for the replacement of animal tests: “The vision for toxicity testing in the 21st century articulated here represents a paradigm shift from the use of experimental animals… toward the use of more efficient in vitro tests and computational techniques.” To its credit, the US government is at least working on initiatives to hasten this. The UK government, however, still denies there is a problem. How many must die before it listens?

Is there an agenda behind this type of animal testing? Let’s follow the money trail. Why do governments defend a system with such a lousy record?  Why do they ignore new technologies that will provide better patient safety and decreasing the time and cost of drug development and also provide safer drugs with fewer adverse reactions?

Governments continue to mandate animal tests even though there is a worldwide acknowledgment among scientists that animal toxicity tests are inadequate and need to be replaced. One HuRELhuman 3D liver tissue coculture for use in toxicological studies as well as studies of drug metabolism and pharmacokinetics is a promising new way to make drug testing more accurate and reliable.


Through the International Foundation for Ethical Research (IFER), NAVS provides critical funding to early career researchers with an interest in developing innovative alternatives to animal experiments. In doing so, NAVS and IFER hope to seed the scientific field with talented individuals prepared to integrate scientific discovery with ethics and respect for animals.

NAVS founded IFER in 1985 and continues to provide the majority of its funding through generous annual grants, which have totaled more than one million dollars.

Please consider any donation amount to support this organization. DONATE

The OTA was disbanded.

The Office of Technology Assessment (OTA) was created by Congress to analyze scientific and technical issues in America. From 1972 to 1995, the OTA conducted studies on health care, pollution, and other such topics.

After producing an unfavorable report of US health care, the agency was disbanded by Congress.

OTA’s 1995 report on health care found that:

  • Life expectancy in the US was among the lowest in developed countries
  • Infant mortality rates in the US are poor
  • Technology in US medicine is expensive and unrestrained
  • 67% of physicians in the US in 1990 were specialists
  • The drug industry exacerbates health care costs while new drugs rarely provide more benefit than old
  • The FDA doesn’t consider the effectiveness of new treatments or compare new products to old
  • The FDA does not consider non-drug alternatives
  • The pre-and post-approval processes for drugs is lacking

The report concluded with these statements:

“Only 10-20% of all procedures used in medical practice are efficacious by controlled trial,” and “There are no mechanisms in place to limit dissemination of technologies regardless of their clinical value.”

The Nutrition Institute of America funded an independent review of “government-approved” medicine published in 2006. Professors Gary Null and Dorothy Smith, along with doctors Carolyn Dean, Martin Feldman, and Debora Rasio, titled the report “Death by Medicine.”

The researchers found that America’s leading cause of death isn’t heart disease or cancer: its conventional medicine. They found that the iatrogenic death rate in the US (death caused by doctors and medical treatments) is 783,936 a year. That’s 84,059 more deaths than those caused by heart disease in 2001 and 230,865 more deaths than those caused by cancer.

Over a decade, the scientists predict that iatrogenic deaths will total about 7.8 million, “more than all the casualties from all the wars fought by the US throughout its entire history,” a death rate equivalent to that caused by six jumbo jets falling out of the sky every day. 

They also believe the numbers are actually much higher because most iatrogenic deaths aren’t reported as such: only 5 to 20% of iatrogenic deaths are reported for fear of lawsuits and because codes for reporting deaths due to drug side effects and other medical errors don’t even exist in many cases. The number of deaths due to conventional medicine may be 20 times higher than the numbers depicted here.

The study authors, using the most conservative statistics they could find, broke down iatrogenic deaths over ten years as follows:

Adverse Drug Reactions 1.06 million
Medical Error 0.98 million
Bedsores 1.15 million
Hospital Infections 0.88 million
Malnutrition in Health Care 1.09 million
Outpatients 1.99 million
Unnecessary Procedures 371,360
Surgery-related 320,000

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