State Rep. Chris Campbell
EDITOR’S NOTE:The following is an op-ed written by State Rep. Chris Campbell (D-West Lafayette) regarding recent reports of animal testing at Inotiv and other pharmaceutical companies:
Last week, like many of my constituents, I was shocked by the gut-wrenching videos from an undercover investigation at Inotiv, a laboratory in Indiana that conducts animal tests for pharmaceutical companies. The footage revealed the distress and death of thousands of animals including dogs, primates, pigs, mice, and rats.
Born in the sterile confines of a cage for the purpose of experimentation, most dogs either die during the process or are killed when the test is over. They have never seen grass or sunlight or snuggled on the couch with their favorite person. Never even afforded a name, just a number, most of these dogs will never experience a moment in life like the ones we take for granted with our pets.
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What is just as shocking is that animal testing continues to be used when the continual dependence on animal testing discourages modernization, perpetuates the inhumane treatment of animals, and results in significant drug failure rates in humans. Animal testing methods are expensive and unreliable. An estimated 90% of drugs ultimately fail in human trials, often due to unexpected toxicity in humans that were not detected in the animal tests.
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Unfortunately, these types of experiments are not only legal, but they are strongly encouraged and accepted by the government. Many research agencies within the federal government directly or indirectly fund experiments using animals, including dogs. At the same time, many experiments on animals are conducted by private companies, like Inotiv, to satisfy regulatory requirements imposed by federal agencies often sluggish to accept non-animal alternatives.
Ending the use of dogs in experiments will require fundamental change among various stakeholders to prioritize the accelerated development of non-animal methods and the rapid adoption of those methods by the research and testing industry.
While these systemic changes will take time, there are 80 puppies currently at the Inotiv lab being used in disturbing tests paid for by Crinetics, a pharmaceutical company based in San Diego.
The puppies are set to be killed in the next few weeks rather than adopted into loving homes. It is too late to save the thousands of animals already killed at this lab, but we can still save these 80 dogs. Please join me in demanding that Inotiv and Crinetics immediately release these puppies into adoptive homes.