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Issue 16
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DR VERNON'S CASEBOOK:
ANIMAL TESTS THAT CAN'T BE JUSTIFIED


            When British physician Dr. Vernon Coleman gave evidence to the House of Lords Select Committee on "Animals in Scientific Procedures" he gave the peers a list of 50 drugs which are regularly prescribed for human patients but are known to cause cancer or other serious problems when given to animals.
      He then argued that "if drugs which are known to cause cancer in animals are happily prescribed for human patients - on the grounds that animals are different to people - there really isn't much point in doing any tests on animals at all."
      The peers were stumped by this simple argument. None of them could find an answer. One peer argued that Dr. Coleman seemed to be "One man in step with everybody out of step." And he was absolutely right.
      "But," says Dr. Coleman, "it hardly seems to be a reason for ignoring or suppressing my argument. The vivisectors and their supporters ignore my very simple argument for one good reason: They cannot counter it."
      As he pointed out to the House of Lords Committee, his argument is very simple.
  1. Drug companies test new drugs on animals.
  2. If the animals are unharmed the drugs are passed OK for use on people.
  3. If the animals are made ill or killed, the drugs are still passed OK for use on people on the grounds that animals are different to people.
  4. If you are going to ignore the results why bother doing millions of tests on animals at all?


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