ANIMAL FREE RESEARCH SHOWCASE
I was very interested to meet scientists from across the UK in Westminster in an event hosted by Animal Free Research UK
This event showcased in how cutting-edge medical technology is transforming the search for cures and treatments for human diseases.
The event included Animal Free Research UK-funded scientist Dr Adrian Biddle and early career researcher Alice Scemama from Queen Mary University London, who demonstrated to MPs from all across the political parties how New Approach Methodologies – known as NAMs – like organ on a chip are greatly improving new drug discovery processes.
Drug development is notoriously slow and expensive – it can take up to 10 years and cost more than £1 billion to bring a new compound from the lab to market. A major cause of this inefficiency is the traditional reliance on testing drugs in animals before they are tested in humans.
Animals often do not accurately reflect human physiology, meaning that drugs which appear to be safe and effective in animals frequently turn out to be harmful or ineffective in humans. This mismatch in biology causes many ineffective or toxic drugs to advance through clinical trials at great expense, while potentially effective compounds never make it to market.
Science is showing us that there are better ways – to model human biology and diseases, and these give the accurate data needed to accelerate the development of new drugs and personalised medicine and it is now time for the UK Government to embrace these high-tech alternatives to animal testing.