In February 1986 the British Parliament's Agriculture Committee began an enquiry into pesticides and human health. The Committee learnt that great reliance is placed on animal experiments but that “...similar tests in different animal species often yield quite different results”(1) An example is the organophosphate pesticide dipterex which produces nerve damage in people but not in the animal tests specially designed to detect such injuries. (2) In fact, Dr Murray of the National Poisons Unit informed the Committee that one well documented case of human poisoning is equivalent to 20,000 animal experiments!'
The Committee concluded that “It cannot be satisfactory to rely on animals so much as a means of testing and as other forms of testing become available, we recommend that they be adopted...we are satisflied from the evidence that we have received that animal testing can produce misleading results."(1)
1) Special Report of the House of Commons Agriculture Committee, reproduced in FRAME News, 1987, No.16,p.2.
2) A.N.Worden in Animals and Alternatives in Toxicity Testing, Eds. M.Balls etal (Academic Press, 1983).
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