Advertisement

How Technology Can Replace Animals in Lab Practices

  • Eduardo DopicoEmail author
  • Eva Garcia-Vazquez
Chapter
Part of the Environmental Discourses in Science Education book series (EDSE, volume 2)

Abstract

In the struggle between instinct and culture, science and education help to combat ignorance. To broaden knowledge is a natural function in humans. Clinical trials with animals allow us to establish hypotheses about living organisms and test possible factors we suppose are conducive to improving our health and quality of life. The consequences for animals used, called lab animals, are usually terrible. People referring to themselves as objectors of such practices have put animal-testing practices into question, generating much discussion. We need to find alternative ways to leave animals peacefully. Currently, biotechnology offers proposes scientific challenges that were unthinkable a few years ago. Thus, today we can use techniques for evaluating many biological risks of substances, and such methods are not harmful to animals. Some of the methods are based on Environmental DNA (eDNA) research that allows the analysis of aquatic ecosystems through a simple sampling of water. Using eDNA, there is no need to sacrifice a cohort of fish to control invasive marine species that travel in ballast water of large vessels. It is more than likely that the fine analysis of the environmental chemistry of the biosphere and the virtual simulation models can afford us to generalize these practices without using animals in clinical trials. The challenges posed by the development of biotechnology offer us a hopeful track that could probably be generalized in the very near future.

Keywords

Science education Animal research Animal welfare Fours Rs principle eDNA 

References

  1. Carenzi, C., & Verga, M. (2009). Animal welfare: Review of the scientific concept and definition. Italian Journal of Animal Science, 8(Suppl. 1). 21–30. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.4081/ijas.2009.s1.22
  2. Demers, G., Griffin, G., De Vroey, G., Haywood, J. R., Zurlo, J., & Bédard, M. (2006). Harmonization of animal care and use guidance. Science, 312, 700–701. doi: 10.1126/science.1124036.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. De Vries, R., Anderson, M. S., & Martinson, B. C. (2006). Normal misbehavior: Scientists talk about the ethics of research. Journal of Empirical Research on Human Research Ethics, 1, 43–50. doi: 10.1525/jer.2006.1.1.43.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Directive 2010/63/EU on the protection of animals used for scientific purposes. Available at: http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=CELEX:32010L0063
  5. Dopico, E., Linde, A. R., & Garcia-Vazquez, E. (2014). Learning gains in lab practices: Teach science doing science. Journal of Biological Education, 48, 46–52. doi: 10.1080/00219266.2013.801874.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. European Commission. (2010). Sixth report on the statistics on the number of animals used for experimental and other scientific purposes in the Member States of the European Union. SEC, p. 1107. Available at: http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/PDF/?uri=CELEX:52010DC0511R(01)&from=ES
  7. Fraser, D. (2008). Understanding animal welfare. Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica, 50(Suppl 1), S1. doi:10.1186/1751-0147-50-S1-S1.Google Scholar
  8. Gruber, F.P., & Hartung, T. (2004). Alternatives to animal experimentation in basic research. ALTEX, 21 (Suppl 1). 3-31. PMID: 15586255
  9. Hansen, L. A., Goodman, J. R., & Chandna, A. (2012). Analysis of Animal Research Ethics Committee Membership at American Institutions. Animals, 2, 68–75. doi: 10.3390/ani2010068.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Haas, M. (2014). International Human Rights: A Comprehensive Introduction. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  11. Hedenqvist, P., & Hellebrekers, L. J. (2003). Laboratory animal analgesia, anesthesia, and euthanasia. In: J. Hau & Gerald L. Van Hoosier Jr, (Eds.), Handbook of laboratory animal science. MA: CRC Press.Google Scholar
  12. Kilkenny, C., Parsons, N., Kadyszewski, E., Festing, M.F., Cuthill, I.C., Fry, D., Hutton, J., & Altman, D.G. (2009). Survey of the quality of experimental design, statistical analysis and reporting of research using animals. PLoS ONE. 4, e7824. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0007824.Google Scholar
  13. Liebsch, M., Grune, B., Seiler, A., Butzke, D., Oelgeschläger, M., Pirow, R., Adler, S., Riebeling, C., & Luch, A. (2011). Alternatives to animal testing: current status and future perspectives. Archives of Toxicology, 85, 841–858. doi: 10.1007/s00204-011-0718-x.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Mandal, J., & Parija, S. C. (2013). Ethics of involving animals in research. Tropical Parasitology, 3, 4–6. doi: 10.4103/2229-5070.113884.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Muñoz-Colmenero, M., Martinez, J. L., Roca, A., & Garcia-Vazquez, E. (2015). Authentication of commercial candy ingredients employing DNA PCR-cloning methodology. Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture, 201–300. doi: 10.1002/jsfa.7158.
  16. National Research Council. (2011). Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals (8th ed.). Washington, DC: National Academies Press.Google Scholar
  17. Nuffield Council on Bioethics (2005). The ethics of research involving animals. London: Nuffield Council on Bioethics. Available at: file:///Users/Apple/Downloads/The%20ethics%20of%20research%20involving%20animals%20-%20Nuffield%20council%20on%20bioethics%20(2005).pdfGoogle Scholar
  18. Pardiñas, A. F., Roca, A., Dopico, E., Garcia-Vazquez, E., & Lopez, B. (2010). Introducing human population biology through an easy laboratory exercise on mitochondrial DNA. Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education, 38, 110–115. doi: 10.1002/bmb.20365.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Perry, P. (2007). The ethics of animal research: A UK perspective. ILAR (Institute for Laboratory Animal Research) Journal, 48, 42–46. doi: 10.1093/ilar.48.1.42.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Resnik, D. B. (2012). Ethical virtues in scientific research. Accountability in Research, 19, 329–343. doi: 10.1080/08989621.2012.728908.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Russell, W. M. S., & Burch, R. L. (2015). The Principles of Humane Experimental Technique. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University.Google Scholar
  22. Singer, P. (Ed) (2005). In defense of animals: The second wave. Australia: Wiley-Blackwell. ISBN-13: 978-1405119412Google Scholar
  23. Taberlet, P., Coissac, E., Hajibabaei, M., & Rieseberg, L. H. (2012). Environmental DNA. Molecular Ecology, 21, 1789–1793. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-294X.2012.05542.x.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Zaiko, A., Martinez, J. L., Schmidt-Petersen, J., Ribicic, D., Samuiloviene, A., & Garcia-Vazquez, E. (2015). Metabarcoding approach for the ballast water surveillance – An advantageous solution or an awkward challenge? Marine Pollution Bulletin, 92, 25–34. doi: 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2015.01.008.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Education ScienceUniversity of OviedoOviedoSpain
  2. 2.Department Functional BiologyUniversity of OviedoOviedoSpain

Personalised recommendations