Other illnesses affecting the brain

Human illness cannot be researched by using animals. The evidence that proves this played a major part of the decision not to build a similar lab in Girton, attached to Cambridge University. The evidence was written by a doctor and can be viewed by going to: http://www.vivisection-absurd.org.uk/xprimate.html and selecting ‘part 2’.

Some of the other illnesses of the brain are also claimed to be advanced through animal study, but as with PD, progress has only been possible through human study.

Multiple Sclerosis

MS is caused by the immune system attacking itself, and the cause is not yet known.

Animal models have misled experimenters about how MS progresses[14] and have symptoms and patterns of damage to the brain that are not at all in line with human experience.[15] They have also failed to provide treatments of value.

“Time after time, researchers have discovered new ways to cure laboratory rats of experimental induced encephalomyelitis, the murine model of MS, only to face obstacles in bringing the treatment to humans.”[16]

Treatments developed on animals include Tumor necrosis factor (which has the opposite effect in humans) [17], Copaxone (which came with numerous side effects)[18], and injected immunoglobins, which were no more effective than placebos [19]. Peptide ligand formulas trials were abandoned as patients nearly died.[20]

Most research into MS has been based on clinical research and culture work using T-cell lines and cells taken from individual patients.[21]

Alzheimer’s Disease

Dr Alois Alzheimer first identified AD using microscopes and autopsy. The lack of mental function is caused by protein becoming uncontrolled and forming protein deposits in the brain now known as neurofibrillary tangles.[22] The particular protein involved (tau) was identified in mice, but altering the mouse’s tau did not even cause any symptoms similar to AD, despite enormous efforts and resources.[23]

The first major breakthrough was the discovery that AD patients lacked acetylcholine, which helps neurons communicate. This was discovered through autopsy.[24]

Animal models have proved frustrating and unproductive:

“The full spectrums of the biochemical and pathological abnormailities characterized by AD have not been found to occur spontaneously in any animal species other than human…”[25]

Another explains: “There is no good animal model for the disease process characterized by a loss of cognitive functions and memory decline.”[26]

While human studies have enabled advances, especially in the knowledge of the genetic implications of AD, a medical journal editorial criticising animal models points out that the first discovered characteristic of AD is not present in animal models:

“More problematically, these animals do not develop neurofibrillary tangles or show significant neurodegeration.”[27]


In a speech at the International Symposium of April 25 1987, Zurich, Dr Med. Bernhard Rambeck, Director of the Biochemistry Department of the Society for Epilepsy Research in Bielefield-Bethel, West Germany stated:
“As a scientist, I am of the opinion that animal experiments bring no progress in the diagnosis and therapy of epilepsies. I have a well-founded suspicion that similar facts apply in other areas of medicine.”[29]

The first accurate description of epilepsy was by John Hughlings Jackson. Long before electroencephalograms (EEGs) he correctly described the illness as one caused by abnormal electrical discharges in the brain. This was based on observing patients, although now, MRIs can show which part of the brain is causing the seizures and how the illness is progressing.

Progress has enabled types of epilepsy to be identified:

“The detailed models for focal interictal discharges arose largely from experiments on brain slices in vitro [studied after death], combined with computer simulations.” [28]

An evaluation of modern epilepsy research by vivisection supporters recently identified the most important methods as:

•Brain imaging methods, especially MRI
•Surgical technique and the ability to detect opportunities for surgery
•Molecular genetics

Animal experiments were not mentioned.[30]

Attempts to cause an animal model by inducing birth defects in animals were based on the discovery that substance abuse in humans is linked to epilepsy. It didn’t work.[31]

The discovery of treatments has been mainly due to discovering the effects medicines have had on epilepsy when intended for another condition. “Overwhelmingly, discovery of the old and a number of the new AEDs [antiepileptic drugs] came from serendipity [chance].”[32]

The idea that animal models would enable this is dismissed:
“In other words, a potent new drug against NMDLA ot NMDA-induces seizures [animal models of epilepsy] is not necessarily a useful drug for therapy of drug-resistant epilepsy (in humans) as demonstrated by the disappointing data from clinical studies with NMDA antagonists in patients with refractory epilepsy.”[33]

Although dogs can naturally develop epilepsy, comparing human and dog patients is not viable due to the way the drugs are handled by the bodies. Vigabatrin treats epileptic dogs, but when given to human was related to severe vision damage and has led to large court cases.[34]

The claim by animal experimenters that their practice has been invaluable is false. It is also a claim which other researchers feel is detrimental to the advancement of science. Concern about the preoccupation with animal research is becoming more prevalent.

The evidence that animal experiments are bad science and hamper the progress of human medicine is overwhelming and more doctors are coming to the conclusion that vivisection is a deeply flawed scientific practice. Vivisectors want to continue with animal experiments not because it’s the best form of research but because it keeps them in their chosen career. It’s vitally important that for those people suffering from terrible illnesses, that the fraud is stopped now.

Unsurprisingly, animal experiments are seen as a poor method of studying human illness and are rapidly becoming less respected. As two pathologists explain:

“In recent years, participants in meetings of the American Association of Neuropathologists have heard criticism about the increasing use of animal models to study human neurologic disease…. A strong cadre of diagnostic and research neuropathologists believe that only human material can provide relevant answers to many problems about human central nervous system disease. In fact, examination of the data bears out this contention. Of the 185 abstracts presented at the 1985 meeting of the American Association of Neuropathologists, 115 (62%) were presentations of human neuropathology, and an astounding 81 (43%) were based on investigations of human brains at autopsy. Among these autopsy studies were seven presentations of either the first complete description of a newly recognized human disorder, or one of the first complete descriptions of an uncommon human neurologic disease.” [35]

See the following websites for more information:
www.curedisease.net - Doctors’ group Europeans from Medical Progress
www.vivisection-absurd.org.uk – Masses of evidence covering news, historical records and other evidence.
http://aerzte-gegen-tierversuche.tierrechte.de/i.php4?Lang=en – European doctors’ group – in English