Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date



The use of animals in medical research and teaching, and the public concern this has generated is not a new issue (Visscher 1969). Ever since scientists began using animals to investigate the function of the body in health and disease, there have been those who opposed their work (Fishman and Richards 1982). Whether this controversy is cyclic is not known, but most concerned biomedical investigators agree that the opposition is here to stay. The author shares this opinion, and thus maintains that it is in the best interest of all parties to be properly educated on the issues. Only through the process of education can we accurately evaluate the pros and cons.

The issues to be addressed in this paper entitled "The Case for the Use of Animals in Medicine" include: 1) a selected sample of animals used in biomedical research and teaching and, 2) a selected sample of diseases which have plagued (do plague) man and other animals, and in which animal research has played a major role in minimizing the suffering and early loss of life. The subject is broad and other, more complete, reviews are available (Sechzer 1983).


Paper presented at the national conference, "Animals and Humans: Ethical Perspectives," Moorhead State University, Moorhead, MN, April 21-23, 1986.