Animal experimentation doubles in 6 years


Sam Wigglesworth

Glasgow Guardian has discovered that the use of animals in scientific testing at Glasgow University has more than doubled in 6 years.

Image by PETA

In 2007 there were 22,200 animals used in experiments at Glasgow University, by 2013, this had increased to 44,579. These figures peaked in 2012, when there were 55, 578 animals tested upon.  The tests were performed on a wide range of animals: amphibians, birds, cattle, fish, rodents, foxes, pigs, rabbits and sheep. Cats were also tested on between 2006-2007.

The British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection (BUAV) recently claimed that the top UK universities had been performing ‘repulsive’ experiments on cats and kittens. Glasgow University was listed as one of the universities that carried out the controversial practices on kittens.

A spokesman for the University of Glasgow has responded to the findings: ‘As a leading research University in the fields of biomedical and life sciences our use of animals is commensurate with our research activity and while numbers fluctuate from year to year, the number of animals used in research over the period in question generally increased.’

The University also said: ‘animals were only used in research programmes of the highest quality and where there are no alternatives and all work carried out adhered to the ‘Home Office licenses.’

Ultimately, the position of the University of Glasgow with regards to animal testing can be found on their website. Their animal testing policy states: ‘Research using animals has made, and continues to make, a vital contribution to the understanding, treatment and cure of a range of major 21st century metabolic and infectious diseases in humans and animals.’

The increase in the number of animals being tested upon is in direct opposition to the University’s claim of a reduction in animal testing . The policy on their website continues: ‘While new methods have enabled scientists and medical researchers to reduce work involving animals, some work must continue for further fundamental advances.”