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FDA No Longer Required to Conduct Animal Tests Before Human Trials For Drugs


A new U.S. law has eliminated the requirement that drugs in development must undergo animal tests before starting human trials.

Animal rights advocates have long pushed for such a move.

Also, the pharmaceutical industry has argued that animal testing can be “ineffective” and “expensive.”

However, there’s a serious question we must ask if pharmaceutical companies can bypass animal testing before human trials.

Does this make humans the lab rats for all Big Pharma products?

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), who sponsored the FDA Modernization Act 2.0, said in a statement that the new law will help end the “needless suffering and death of animal test subjects” and will “get safer, more effective drugs to market more quickly by cutting red tape that is not supported by current science.”

While ending torturous testing on animal subjects is admirable, does this legislation give Big Pharma a pass to conduct dangerous tests on humans?

Do we seriously trust Big Pharma to get ‘safer, more effective drugs’ to market quicker with this bill?

Why would we place any trust in Big Pharma?

Why would we trust companies like Pfizer to develop ‘safe, more effective drugs?’

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Watch Sen. Rand Paul pitch the legislation below:

NPR reported:

Signed by President Biden in December as part of a larger spending package, the law doesn't ban the testing of new drugs on animals outright.

Instead it simply lifts the requirement that pharmaceutical companies use animals to test new drugs before human trials. Companies can still test drugs on animals if they choose to.

There are a slew of other methods that drugmakers employ to assess new medications and treatments, such as computer modeling and "organs on a chip," thumb-sized microchips that can mimic how organs' function are affected by pharmaceuticals.

But Aliasger Salem, a professor at the University of Iowa's College of Pharmacy, told NPR that companies opting to use these alternative testing methods as a replacement for animal testing must be aware of the methods' limits to ensure their drugs are safe.

"The companies need to be aware of the limitations of those technologies and their ability to identify or not identify potential toxicities," Salem said.

"You don't want to shift to systems that might not capture all of the types of toxicities that have been seen in the past without ensuring that the methods that you have will capture that."

An FDA spokesperson told NPR that it will "implement all applicable provisions in the omnibus and continue to work with stakeholders to encourage the development of alternative testing methods."

This year's federal budget also includes $5 million for a new FDA program aimed at reducing animal testing by helping to develop and encourage industry to adopt new product testing methods, the spokesperson said.

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