Animal Testing

We all understand that there are certain needs we, as a species, have in order to improve and extend our existence. Diseases such as cancer, AIDS, diabetes, et cetera are worldwide killers that many scientists and doctors are working round the clock to cure or, at least, contain.

Sadly, the most common way to study and treat these diseases is to use animal surrogates to try out new medicines and techniques. It is unquestionably necessary, but at the same time, unspeakably crue. Animals testing facilities are horrible to comprehend, especially given the distinct bonds between some of the animals (dogs, cats and chimpanzees come to mind) that are subject to the most awful experiments.

It’s inhumane. I mean that literally – the acts performed upon these animals are things that nothing but a sociopath would ever inflict upon another human being. But, sadly, it is probably necessary.

Animals testing the effects of cancer is a good example. Recent studies have come out showing that cancer in mice effects the nerve center that produces dopamine, a hormone that regulates mood and can cause either elation (if too much is present) or depression (if there is not enough dopamine in the system). Well recent tests on mice and rats that had cancer showed that they were, for lack of a better term, depressed.

Let me describe the scene: The scientists would place a physically fit specimin (a rat or a mouse) into a small pool of water, several feet from the edge and safety. Both species of animals, while not exactly dolphins, are adept enough in the water to swim without problems. To a mouse (heh), each fit specimin would immediately swim to the nearest dry platform and climb out of the water.

They then did the same test with rats and mice that had cancer. In this instance, over 90% of the cancer-stricken rodents would float listlessly in the center of the pool making no attempt to reach the sides or dry land. They weren’t being emo, they were being biologically sick. They were depressed.

How does that effect human beings? Well this example of animals testing illustrates that treating cancer perhaps requires more than just chemotherapy, radiation and rest. If you don’t have the will to fight the disease because of depression… you’ll be in big trouble. Now scientists and doctors can look into treating secondary and tertiary symptoms as long as the deadly, primary symptoms.