The FDA Modernization Act (S.2952/H.R.2565) would eliminate the 80-year-old FDA rule that requires drug developers to conduct animal testing and would allow researchers to use the most modern, reliable testing methods available.
Millions of animals, including dogs, cats, rabbits, mice, rats, and pigs, are used in cruel and painful taxpayer funded research each year. They suffer even though non-animal testing methods are available and most are euthanized when they are no longer needed for research. By removing the FDA’s requirement for animal testing researchers can spare the suffering of at least some of these animals.
Fortunately, non-animal testing methods are available and include cell-based assays, organ chips, microphysiological systems, sophisticated computer modeling, and other human biology-based test methods. Approximately, 90% of all new drugs fail in human clinical studies after years of development and billions of dollars are spent and the unknown loss of animal lives.
Not only are animal lives wasted but incredible amounts of time and money, including federal tax dollars, are wasted too. It takes at least 10 years and $1 billion to bring a new drug to market. Due to the reliance on animal testing, there is an overall failure rate in drug development of over 96%, including a 90% failure rate during clinical development. That high failure rate inflates the price of the few successful drugs that reach the market. Those inflated costs are passed on to taxpayers through health insurance premiums.
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