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Applying Animal Research to Modern Practice on Humans (Coursework Sample)


Description of how animal studies relate to modern practice on humans, citing at least one example. Be sure to use at least one reference.


Applying Animal Research to Modern Practice on Humans
Applying Animal Research to Modern Practice on Humans
Biomedical research is a challenging process. The human body is the most intricate tool in existence with trillions of cells with each cell having billions of molecules. Over the years, biomedical researchers have been trying to understand how the molecules communicate with each other to cause the body to function. The past five centuries has seen a mushrooming of investigative tools such as cell cultures, non-invasive imaging, and various computer models all geared towards helping in fighting diseases and ignorance. Despite the efforts by the researchers, there is still no technology that replicates the complexity of a living organism and hence the importance of applying animal studies to modern practice on humans (Goodman, et al. 2015).
Without being able to use animal research in their work, the efforts by scientists would greatly be hampered. Over the years, researchers have been using animals as guinea pigs to learn what can or what cannot work and then apply it on human beings. Since the research stage is about trial and error, scientists prefer to use animals for study and then once the study is established to be safe, it is transferred to the human beings. The use of animals for research is highly recommended since using human beings for research purposes is considered to be unethical. For this reason, animals are important in research as they make it possible to test whether new medicines are ideal for human use. Without the use of these animals, it would be hard for biomedical researchers to understand whether a drug that is on the development stage is ideal for human consumption or not (Goodman, et al. 2015).
One of the areas where animal research has been successfully applied in human beings is in the study of the human brain and how it can be treated. The most notable of these studies was by John Eccles who conducted a ground breaking study on cats to understand how the synapse works. In 1962, Eccles set out to establish how the drug epinephrine could be used as a neurotransmitter. Although there was sufficient evidence to show that epinephrine was a brain neurotransmitter, there was no consensus on where in the brain the synapses were located. In order to complete his study, Eccles used cats to conduct his study since this animal could tolerate prolonged hypothermia something that made it possible to slow the brain metabolism and the maintenance of effective brain activity. This study on cats led to an understanding of spinal physiology and hence acted as a background for the understanding of depression and its cure. Eccles study was so effective to an extent that he was awarded the 1963 Nobel Prize for his contribution to science (Hackam, & Redelmeier, 2006).
Although there has been widespread opposition on the use of animals for biomedical research, the fact remains that animals are an important link towards the understanding of human cell physiology. Ideally, most of the opposition has been from people who feel that some of the studies that are...
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