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`Inexact Substitutes'

Frederick Goodwin and Adrian Morrison misinterpreted my statements regarding animal experimentation in their commentary of Sept. 6, 1993 ("In Animal Rights Debate, The Only Valid Moderates Are Researchers," page 12). The point I made was that medical research is based primarily on studies of human individuals or populations, along with examination of human tissues and cells. Those who use animals as inexact substitutes always encounter problems of extrapolation to humans, often with grave con

Neal Barnard
Frederick Goodwin and Adrian Morrison misinterpreted my statements regarding animal experimentation in their commentary of Sept. 6, 1993 ("In Animal Rights Debate, The Only Valid Moderates Are Researchers," page 12). The point I made was that medical research is based primarily on studies of human individuals or populations, along with examination of human tissues and cells.

Those who use animals as inexact substitutes always encounter problems of extrapolation to humans, often with grave consequences. The deaths of five human subjects following "successful" tests of a hepatitis drug on dogs is the latest example. Overall, of 198 drugs marketed during the decade 1976- 85, more than half (102) were so much more toxic than premarket animal and limited human trials had indicated that they had to be relabeled or withdrawn.

Similarly, of 25 drugs that appeared to treat strokes in rodents, not a single one worked in people. Millions of dollars,...

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