'SuperVet' please close down the Humanimal Trust and agree to the EDM 66 science debate.
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Many will be shocked to learn that 'Supervet' Noel Fitzpatrick has established a charity called the Humaninal Trust, which promotes the false concept of 'One Medicine' for animals and humans alike. 'One Medicine' claims that experiments on animals can predict the responses of human patients, in disease research and the safety testing of new human medicines. It also suggests that naturally occurring illnesses in veterinary patients can be used to study human responses to disease and medicines. These claims are quite simply not true, and our medical Board has published a statement addressing that here.
The Humanimal Trust is founded upon incorrect science, which supports animal experiments as entirely responsible for human medical progress.
In an interview on Today FM, Noel Fitzpatrick said:
"We all breathe air, we all have skeletons, we all have organs we're all going to die. We are animals, there's very little difference between you, me and a dog. Human medical practice is entirely based on the experimentation on animals - and I'm not against that don't get me wrong, a certain amount of it is necessary to get you a hard stent, hopefully you won't need it for a while, but there you go".
For those interested in reading the correct history of the developments of stents - and the fact that animals did not contribute as predictive models of humans - please visit this peer reviewed science paper.
FM Radio presenter Anton Savage continues his interview with Noel Fitzpatrick: “You don’t see much in the way of dividing line medically between animals and humans?”
Noel replies: “That’s spot on, I see zero dividing line and that’s for a few different reasons; the first reason is of course the obvious reason that all medical advance has to happen somehow and the remarkable thing for most people sitting in their bed sit, or their massive opulent castle, is that none of them realise where their knee replacement or their shoulder replacement or their aspirin tablet actually came from. Well it came usually from an experiment on an animal, so that’ll be a dog, a sheep, a goat, a pig”.
It is entirely wrong of Noel to suggest that there is 'zero dividing line' between animals and humans. Animals and humans respond very differently to drugs and diseases and that fact is well known in the medical community. For example:
Paracetamol is toxic to cats; chocolate can kill dogs yet humans consume large volumes. Ibuprofen causes kidney failure in dogs even at very low doses. Ketamine works well in primates but not so well in guinea pigs and rats. Morphine works well for humans but some cats get very excited when given morphine and it can cause seizures in mice. Tamoxifen causes liver tumors in rats. Penicillin can be toxic to some guinea pigs and hamsters. Viruses like HIV cause very different conditions and diseases in humans than in nonhuman primates. Vaccines that worked well in monkeys harmed humans. Animals reacted very differently from humans to smoking and environmental toxins like asbestos. Dogs don’t suffer from heart beat abnormalities from Terfenadine, also known as Seldane (humans do) but neither do they receive any benefit from the drug (humans do). Aspirin can cause blood abnormalities in cats and they can only take the medication every third day. Chloramphenicol, an antibiotic, caused life threatening aplastic anaemia in cats. Chloramphenicol is a good example of a drug that varies tremendously from species to species. Dogs do well with it, but cats die from it. Drugs known to damage the human foetus are found to be safe in 70% of cases, when tried on primates. For many more examples please visit this link.
Here are some more examples of data from animal studies causing harm and fatalities to humans:
Penicillin stayed on the shelf for over a decade because the rabbits Fleming tested it on led him to believe it would be ineffective in humans. Scientists were misled about HIV enters the human cell because of studies on monkeys. The polio vaccine was delayed by decades because the way monkeys responded turned out to be very different from the way humans reacted. The cardiopulmonary bypass machine killed the first patients it was used on and it was only after human data was used that the machine turned was safe. Studying strokes and brain haemorrhage in animals has led to multiple medical treatments that worked in animals but that resulted in harm to human patients. HIV vaccines that protected monkeys have actually increased the risk of contracting HIV in the volunteers that took the vaccine. The flip side of all this is the fact that society has also lost cures and treatments because scientists believed the results from animals: the National Cancer Institute has said that we have lost cures for cancer because studies in rodents have been believed.
The above examples demonstrate that this issue is a matter of life and death
For more examples where applying animal data has harmed or killed humans, please visit our webpage.
Noel Fitzpatrick builds his incorrect argument - that there is 'zero dividing line between animals and humans' - on the false notion that animals and humans are simple systems, when in truth we are all examples of evolved living complex systems - and those complex systems are now proven to be not capable of predicting biological responses for each other. This fact is well demonstrated by identical twins, who are now known to suffer from different illness, requiring treatments that are entirely unique for their specific genetic profiles. In support of an Open Letter he recently signed, BBC naturalist Chris Packham says: "Add this detailed knowledge about genetics to our present-day understanding of the roles evolutionary biology and complexity science play in medical research, and we have evidence which exposes the fallacy of continuing to claim that experiments on dogs, and other animals, are a viable scientific practice for human patients."
Pharmaceutical companies acknowledge the failure of animal models in their drug development process, and write about this openly and often in the scientific literature. In 2104, the Editor in Chief of the British Medical Journal, Dr Fiona Godlee, published her Editor's Choice reporting the failure of animals as predictive models of human patients. And today, Drs Shanks and Greek provide us with Trans-Species Modeling Theory (TSMT) - which is like the Germ Theory of Disease and the Theory of Relativity, in that it explains the wider scientific reasons for well known practical evidence: in this case how and why animal models fail humans.
Watch a science lecture
Please watch this insightful and accessible science lecture by Dr Ray Greek, delivered at the University of British Columbia in July 2017. The lecture is a fascinating tour with complexity science experts, who guide us carefully, explaining how and why animal modelling has no scientific basis, whatsoever, in today's context of up-to-date knowledge about evolutionary biology, genetics, complexity science and personalised medicine.
In May 2016, the Humaninal Trust submitted incorrect scientific evidence to Parliament's Science and Technology Committee, with a view to attracting funding for 'One Medicine'. Our Medical Board published a blog addressing this, which is well worth reading.
Excerpts from the Humanimal Trust's submission to Parliament include their campaign to apply the results of animal studies from naturally occurring diseases in veterinary patients, to humans:
'The rationale for studying natural (or ‘spontaneous’) diseases and disorders in animals is to develop a translational bridge between preclinical data derived from normal laboratory animals and clinical trials in human patients.
Evaluation of candidate therapies in veterinary clinical patients makes sense from ethical, scientific and financial perspectives . The use of naturally occurring disease eliminates the need to use purpose-bred research animals, and is therefore in line with the concept of “reduction” that is espoused in Russell and Burch’s 3Rs .'
The above is a classic case of the misleading 3Rs policy, 'reduction of animal numbers', developed in 1959 by Russell and Burch for 'humane experimental technique on animals'. The 3Rs entirely ignores up-to-date science and the fact that animal studies are now a proven medical disaster for human patients. On a separate ethical note, by merely calling for a reduction of animal numbers the 3Rs also prolongs the suffering of sentient animals who will be left over in laboratories, after their numbers have only been reduced.
Please sign and share our petition to 'Supervet' Noel Fitzpatrick, asking him to please close down the Humanimal Trust and agree to participate in the rigorous scientific debate called for by Parliamentary EDM 66.
Petition by Patients Campaigning For Cures, an organisation established and run by patients and their families to campaign for best practice in medical research, to speed up the arrival of effective treatments and cures.
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