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Guinea Pigs Experience Hypothermia, Drills In Heads, In Otago Experiment

Yet another experiment is being exposed at the University of Otago by a scientific watchdog. This time, Guinea Pigs were subjected to hypothermia and had holes drilled into their heads to damage their inner ears.

The New Zealand Anti-Vivisection Society (NZAVS) calls the experiment ‘pointlessly cruel.’

“It seems like these experiments are getting further and further from human relevance. The paper talks about implications for further animal-based research. The University of Otago needs to take a step back and ask themselves what they are doing to ensure that their research stays focused on humans,” said NZAVS executive director Tara Jackson in a statement.

“Ultimately the University of Otago sets the direction for their researchers. If they keep investing in animal experiments, they’ll keep getting more animal experiments. They need to start thinking about new technologies and human-relevant research.”

“There is a large body of research demonstrating that other species are not good models for humans. This particular animal model physically destroys the balance organ of an animal to draw a relationship to recovery of the human nervous system. But they do not spell out why they think that leap is justified,” said Jackson.

“Moreover, the study we are exposing only aims at parameters of that animal model and does not even strive for direct human relevance.”

The paper uses the word ‘human’ once in a reference to another piece of research, which NZAVS cites as evidence that the research lacks human relevance.

NZAVS contends that the best way forward is to use technologies that are specifically designed to be relevant to humans.

“The so-called ‘animal model’ is decades out of date. The scientists of the future are recognising that humans and other species of animal have significant differences that prevent research from being translatable between them. Instead, the University of Otago should focus on emerging technologies that better replicate the human body,” said Jackson.

The group promises to continue to campaign against and expose the University of Otago unless the University starts improving on these issues.

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