A bipartisan bill has come into effect in the United States, modernizing the requirements to test new drugs by no longer requiring animal testing, a political move applauded by animal rights activists.
“This is a win for people and a win for animals,” states Senator Cory Booker, co-sponsor of the bill and advocate of animal welfare legislation. The new legislation will “better protect humans from unsafe drugs,” as well as “save… hundreds of thousands of animals from being tortured and killed” and “better affirm human health.”
According to the FDA Modernization Act 2.0 – which includes the original FDA Modernization Act and the Reduced Animal Testing Act – certain pharmaceuticals don’t have to test experimental drugs on animals before they are used on humans in clinical trials. On top of being cruel, the method is unnecessary thanks to the development of modern technology. Computer modeling, cell-based assays, organ chips, and microphysiological systems are among more human testing methods. The National Institutes of Health has estimated that close to 96% of drugs that undergo animal testing fail during clinical trials as animal testing isn’t a reliable indicator of how a drug performs on humans. Animal rights groups such as Animal Wellness Action and PETA most welcome this new legislation since it “will not only save public and private dollars by making drug screening faster, better, and more efficient, but it will also save countless human and non-human lives in the process,” explains Wayne Pacelle from the Center for a Humane Economy.