Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past couple of weeks, odds are you’ve heard about the Ice Bucket Challenge. People from all walks of life have joined in, but Pamela Anderson has voiced her concern over the fact that the ALS Association fund and carry out animal testing.
In a recent Facebook status, Anderson wrote, “Sorry – I can’t bring myself to do your Ice bucket challenge. I enjoy a good dare. It’s always good to bring awareness in fun, creative ways … I don’t want to take away from that.” She went on to explain that after some research, she’d realized that her beliefs weren’t aligned with the practices of the ALS Association, so instead she challenged them to stop animal testing.
She explains that — while she is opposed to animal testing on the basis of animal suffering — it’s also not an effective research method, from a scientific perspective. Over the past decade of ALS research, only 12 drugs have moved on to human testing, and only one of these has been approved for human use. The one that is suitable for human use only has marginal benefits for ALS sufferers.
“This massive failure rate is typical for animal experiments,” Anderson wrote, “because even though animals feel pain and suffer like we do, their bodies often react completely differently to drugs and diseases. According to the FDA, 92 out of every 100 drugs that pass animal trials fail during the human clinical trial phase.”
Anderson goes on to suggest more effective alternatives to animal testing: “Sophisticated non-animal testing methods—including in vitro methods, advanced computer-modeling techniques, and studies with human volunteers, among others—have given us everything from the best life-saving HIV drugs to cloned human skin for burn victims. Trying to cure human diseases by relying on outdated and ineffective animal experiments isn’t only cruel—it’s a grave disservice to people who desperately need cures.”
Instead, Anderson suggests visiting the website for the PCRM’ Humane Charity Seal of Approval, and donating to a charity that doesn’t support animal research.