Target: U.S. Food and Drug Administration
Goal: Commend new testing method that does not test on animals
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has proposed a new drug testing strategy for discovering drugs that are toxic to the heart that completely avoids testing on animals. This represents a dramatic change from current approaches involving measurement of heart rate and physiology in animals.
The FDA, the Health and Environmental Sciences Institute and the Cardiac Safety Research Consortium’s proposal combines a computer-based model and tests on isolated human heart muscle cells. It recommends accelerated development and evaluation of these “21st century technologies” and has a goal of being ready for use in two years. Although the ability of these methods to fully replace the animal tests will depend on the scientific evaluation of the new methods, it is a great step towards removing animal testing as a common way of testing new drugs.
“This is a truly exciting initiative, which confirms that the extensive international work by The Humane Society of the United States, Humane Society International and other organizations in moving away from animal testing in chemical safety evaluation will lead to more effective human health outcomes,” said Catherine Willett, PhD, director of regulatory toxicology for The Humane Society of the United States.
Dear U.S. Food and Drug Administration,
Thank you for proposing this new way of testing new medicines. Not having to test new drugs on animals would be such a great step towards removing animal testing from laboratories. Using “21st century technologies” is more technologically advanced and hopefully more accurate than testing on animals, where it is not as easy to see what exactly is going on on the molecular level or how humans would react to the drug.
This new method of testing new drugs is a great step forward for animal welfare. I commend you for coming up with this new initiative.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Joanna Servaes via Wikimedia Commons