Wissenschaftlicher Kongress am Samstag, 27. Oktober 2018 in Köln

Dr Jarrod Bailey

Dr Jarrod Bailey PhD, Senior Research Scientist at Cruelty Free International; Fellow at the Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics, Hexham, UK 

About Dr Jarrod Bailey, PhD

Dr Jarrod Bailey, PhD is Cruelty Free International’s (formerly the BUAV) Senior Research Scientist. He received his degree in Genetics and Ph.D. in viral genetics from Newcastle University in the 1990s, then spent seven years investigating the possible causes of premature birth in humans. Since then, he has evaluated the scientific validity and human relevance of animal models in biomedical research and drug/product testing. He has reviewed the limitations of using nonhuman primates and other animals in various fields of research, including the testing of substances that can cause birth defects and cancer; the use of chimpanzees and other nonhuman primates in various forms of medical research including HIV/AIDS, cancer, hepatitis and neuroscience; the use of genetically modified animals to research diseases such as cystic fibrosis, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, among others; and the use of dogs, monkeys and other species in pre-clinical testing of new human drugs. He has authored several substantial scientific petitions and submissions of evidence to a variety of British, European and US inquiries into the validity of animal research, and nonhuman primate research in particular; has authored a number of chapters of scientific books by invitation; and has taken part in many debates on animal research both in public and political arenas.

Non-human primates in neuroscience research: The case against its scientific necessity

Abstract

Public opposition to non-human primate (NHP) experiments is significant and increasing, yet it continues in spite of this because those who defend them cite minimal harm to NHPs, and substantial human benefit. Both claims are refuted by evidence. Investigations and scientific papers over the years have documented the severe suffering that can be experienced by monkeys used in biomedical experiments, perhaps most notably in neuroscience. Neurophysiology experiments can be some of the most severe, typically involving brain surgery to implant recording devices into monkeys’ skulls, harsh water deprivation regimes, immobilisation in primate chairs during experimental procedures which last several hours per day, and which can be conducted for years. We argue that such circumstances cause severe stress and distress, which not only adversely affect welfare, but also the reliability of experimental data.

We have also comprehensively reviewed claims of human benefit, specifically in neuroscience, and show that: a) there is a default, speculative assumption of the human relevance and benefit of NHP neuroscience, rather than robust evidence to support it; b) the human relevance and essential contribution and necessity of NHP neuroscience are wholly overstated; c) the contribution and capacity of non-animal investigative methods are greatly understated; and d) confounding issues, such as species differences and the effects of stress and anaesthesia, are usually overlooked. This is the case in NHP research generally, but we have specifically focussed on salient historical and contemporary claims of NHP neuroscience researchers for the necessity of their work, namely: the development and interpretation of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), deep brain stimulation (DBS), the understanding of neural oscillations and memory, and investigation of the neural control of movement and of vision/binocular rivalry. The increasing power of human-specific methods, including advances in fMRI and invasive techniques such as electrocorticography and single-unit recordings, renders NHP approaches redundant. We conclude that the defence of NHP use is groundless, and that neuroscience would be more relevant and successful for humans if it were conducted with a direct human focus. We have confidence in opposing NHP neuroscience, both on scientific as well as on ethical grounds, and contend that the harm:benefit balance of NHP neuroscience is much more biased against it than is commonly accepted.