Urge Cardiff to stop
experiments blinding animals
Experiments at Cardiff University have been revealed in which
kittens were raised in darkness or had their eyelids sewn shut, and were then
subjected to brain experiments and killed. 31 kittens (and their mothers in
some cases) were used in the research which took place in 2010 but has only
recently come to light. It is very possible
that Cardiff is continuing to conduct animal
research of this kind. Please contact them to demand that they stop these
were raised in total darkness for up to three months in the experiment, while
others had one eyelid sewn shut after a month of life. Others were reared in
the laboratory in "normal" conditions for up to a year but all the
cats and kittens were subjected to brain surgery and killed at the end of the
experiment. The experiments, published in the European Journal of Neuroscience in 2012, were at least partially
paid for by the taxpayer as they were supported by a Medical Research Council
grant but the paper makes no reference to the treatment of human conditions and
has no direct application to the study of human eye diseases.
About 200 cats were used in research in the UK in 2012 (the last year for which we
have figures) but the number of experiments they were subjected to shows that
many were used in more than one test. Official figures for 2012 show that over 33,000 tests on animals involved "interference with the special
senses" and over 21,000 involved "interference with the brain".
The majority of animals were rats and mice although monkeys and others
were used. Neither the
research paper published by Cardiff or official figures can possibly convey the
confusion, fear and suffering of animals deprived of their normal vision.
University carried out over 50,000 experiments on animals in 2011 alone. Please contact the university's vice-chancellor
to demand that they commit immediately to conduct no experiments on cats or which
involve blinding animals or interfering with animals' brains, and that they utilise
humane methods to replace all animal experiments.
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