Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder that affects around 2.2% of children worldwide. Many thousands of animals have been used in experiments designed to achieve better understanding and treatment of this disease. But have the benefits been worth the animal lives, and the scientific and financial resources consumed? Based on our systematic review of 211 publications describing relevant animal studies, the answer is 'clearly not!' Our systematic review has just been published in ALTEX
A 2011 review by Bateson and colleagues was the first major systematic assessment of the ethics of UK primate experimentation. It concluded that 91% of studies were ethically justifiable. My detailed critique
of that review was recently published in AATEX
'It has to be wrong. I don’t know why it is wrong, but it has to be wrong.'
So said the reviewers of major journals such as Science
, who were unable to find any scientific errors, but nevertheless chose to reject a paper demonstrating profoundly different genomic and biochemical responses between mice models and human patients suffering from important inflammatory diseases. The New York Times
stated earlier this week that, "For decades, mice have been the species of choice in the study of human diseases. But now, researchers report evidence that the mouse model has been totally misleading for at least three major killers — sepsis, burns and trauma. As a result, years and billions of dollars have been wasted following false leads, they say. … Sepsis, a potentially deadly reaction that occurs as the body tries to fight an infection, afflicts 750,000 patients a year in the United States, kills one-fourth to one-half of them, and costs the nation $17 billion a year. It is the leading cause of death in intensive-care units. … [This study] helps explain why every one of nearly 150 drugs tested at a huge expense in patients with sepsis has failed. The drug tests all were based on studies in mice. And mice, it turns out, can have something that looks like sepsis in humans, but is very different from the condition in humans."
This revolutionary new paper is here