• Don Lichterman

EPA, Cleveland Clinic, Georgia (MCG), FDA, NIH, OPS, LSU, ALTEX, the Next 35 & Non-Animal Methods!

New EPA Policy Will Stop Painful LD50 Skin Test

Following urging from the Physicians Committee, the Environmental Protection Agency announced in October a new draft policy that will allow companies to avoid conducting a painful rabbit test for new pesticides and cleaning products, saving 750 animals each year. Other Animal Tests Ended

Human Tissue Needed to Reduce Animal Use for Biomedical Research

A Physicians Committee report published in the journal ALTEX presents a strategy to increase the access to and availability of human tissue, which holds great potential for furthering our understanding of human biology and disease pathology, and for developing safe and effective medical products. Read More

Medical College of Georgia!

Last January, we launched a public campaign against the Medical College of Georgia (MCG) at Augusta University. That month, we filed a complaint with the federal government because the school was using live animals in its surgery program, which we believe is a violation of the Animal Welfare Act.

Even after the federal complaint, MCG refused to change. So we asked a group of Georgia physicians to sign a letter to the school, and we purchased three billboards to bring attention to the issue. In response to the Physicians Committee raising public awareness about this practice, MCG told reporters it would immediately stop using animals to train general surgery residents!

We could not have achieved this victory without your support! Now, MCG joins the 197 other general surgery residency programs in the U.S. that exclusively use human-relevant training methods.

Please join us in thanking MCG for making the switch to ethically and educationally superior training methods.

Government Agencies Get Serious About Non-Animal Methods

The government is on everyone’s mind this week, and rightly so. But during this hectic time, we wanted to make sure you didn’t miss some positive news coming from several government agencies. AAVS takes every opportunity to urge agencies to reduce animal testing requirements and to instead help spur innovation that can save animal lives. So, when there are promising signals about alternatives coming from these agencies, we want to acknowledge that work.

On October 19-20, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) hosted its Second Annual Conference on the State of the Science concerning the development and use of alternative methods, as the agency works to reduce “mammal studies by 30 percent by 2025 and eliminate all mammal study requests and funding by 2035.” Some of the topics covered at this year’s event included: progress in incorporating alternatives into regulatory testing; building confidence in data produced by alternatives; lessons learned in evaluating alternatives used in cosmetic testing; and assessing developmental neurotoxicity using alternatives.

Opening the conference, Administrator Andrew Wheeler set the tone of the event, stating, “I’m optimistic that we have the talent and creativity to develop [alternatives] for chemical testing that achieve the goals we have set, while continuing to protect public health and the environment.”

The Food & Drug Administration (FDA)

The Food & Drug Administration (FDA) renewed its partnership with Emulate, a leading commercial developer of Organ-on-a-Chip technology, to study the safety and effectiveness of drugs and vaccines that could be used to treat diseases such as COVID-19 and Alzheimer’s, without the use of animals. FDA Chief Scientist, Rear Admiral Denise Hinton, stated that such research collaborations are “crucial to advancing technologies like Organ-Chips that may help identify toxicity, efficacy, and disease susceptibility earlier in product development.” READ MORE

The National Institutes of Health (NIH)

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Department of Defense (DOD) have awarded over $870,000 in grants to Axosim, a New Orleans-based company that has developed models of the nervous system for testing the efficacy and potential toxic effects of drugs. The company’s ALS NerveSim™ is the first model of its kind, developed to study the devastating disease ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease, using patient-derived cells. The BrainSim™ platform will be expanded to enhance screening of potentially neurotoxic compounds and enable more effective drug development. READ MORE

The Oklahoma Primate Sanctuary (OPS)

The Oklahoma Primate Sanctuary (OPS) is trying to recover from a late October ice storm that crippled large areas of the state. While all the monkeys, staff, and volunteers are safe, the sanctuary faces a massive cleanup. Large trees and branches have fallen making it difficult to maneuver throughout the sanctuary to care for the monkeys, many of whom are retired from research. Because the damage is so extensive, a tree service is needed to help with the cleanup. To cover this cost, OPS has started a Facebook fundraiser. Will you help the monkeys at OPS by making a donation today? Help OPS to not just meet their $3,000 goal, but to surpass that amount!

The Oklahoma Primate Sanctuary is one of our favorite sanctuaries caring for monkeys who have been released from labs, and AAVS will be making a special grant to OPS to help it recover from the devastating ice storm and to make sure that they are prepared for the winter weather, too. Join us in supporting OPS so it can continue to provide a safe home for all the monkeys in its care. Read More and Help Out Now!

These Horrific Experiments on Animals Must End

What they do to dogs, owls, monkeys, and sparrows in pointless experiments isn’t science — it’s torture.

Never forget the faces of these infamous animal experimenters. Urge Johns Hopkins University to shut down its owl lab. https://support.peta.org/page/7677/ac...

Urge Louisiana State University to end Christine Lattin's cruelty. https://support.peta.org/page/1068/ac...

Urge Peter Nghiem to end the horror in Texas A&M University's canine muscular dystrophy dog lab. https://support.peta.org/page/10969/a...

Urge the National Institutes of Health to stop funding Elisabeth Murray's torment of monkeys. https://investigations.peta.org/nih-m...

PETA's mission statement is that animals are not ours to experiment on, eat, wear, use for entertainment, or abuse in any other way: https://www.peta.org/about-peta/

No Chimp Left Behind

Relocating the 32 chimpanzees still remaining at California's shuttered Wildlife Waystation will be no easy task, requiring the participation of multiple sanctuaries and millions of dollars for new construction.

And time is running short—every day of California's fire season brings risk at their current location.

AAVS has successfully assisted sanctuaries since 2015 with the expansion of their existing facilities, and hundreds of chimps have benefitted from your generosity.

The chimpanzees at Wildlife Waystation need new homes. Please act today to ensure that they will be able to enjoy the rest of their lives in peace, safety, and comfort.

Please help get them get to the new home!

Cleveland Clinic Ends Animal Use!

I have some exciting news to share with you. The Physicians Committee has learned that Cleveland Clinic has stopped using live animals to train surgeons!

Previously, the hospital held up to three pig labs per year to teach invasive procedures to its general surgery residents. We thank you for your continued support, which makes victories like this possible! Join our live briefing today to hear about this campaign.

Last May, I began corresponding with officials at the hospital, to provide evidence in support of nonanimal training methods, which are exclusively used for training in Cleveland Clinic’s other general surgery residency program at South Pointe Hospital in Ohio. We were thrilled when the hospital’s surgery program director agreed to reassess animal use and determined that nonanimal training methods were best.

In another development, we recently confirmed that the joint Spectrum Health and Michigan State University surgery program in Grand Rapids has also decided to stop using animals to train its surgeons!

Now, Cleveland Clinic and Spectrum Health join the 195 other general surgery programs in the U.S. that use only human-relevant training methods–like human-patient simulators, laparoscopic simulators, virtual reality trainers, and human cadavers.

Your activism and financial support are key to these victories and will ultimately propel us to success through our First, Do No Harm campaign, which will lead to the end of animal use in all medical training programs.

Please join us in celebrating these victories and in hoping that there are many more to follow. With your support, we will continue to modernize medical training. Hear more about these victories and celebrate with Dr. Neal Barnard LIVE today, Friday, Oct. 23, at 2 p.m. ET during our Mission Critical member update! Learn more and register now.

End Animal Torture in Labs!

Dogs are force-fed poison, put on treadmills until their hearts explode, and have their skulls drilled open while they're still alive. This cruelty is completely legal and happens every year in research labs across the United States. But a trailblazing new bill wants to end animal torture for research. Please sign the petition now urging Congress to pass the Humane Research and Testing Act of 2020 to save animals' lives.

This bill paves the way for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to develop, fund, and incentivize research methods that don’t exploit animals. If passed, it would:

  • Help the up to 23 million animals exploited in U.S. labs every year that receive minimal to no protection under animal welfare laws

  • Encourage the use of more accurate methods of researching new products and medicines, as animal testing is ineffective and outdated

  • Require NIH to track and report the number of rats, mice, birds and other animals used in its experiments

Sign the petition urging legislators to pass the Humane Research and Testing Act of 2020, saving millions of animals from pain, torture and death. 

Join Dr. Neal Barnard for The Next 35, a virtual celebration of the Physicians Committee’s 35-year anniversary!

We’ll look back on highlights from the past three decades and also look towards the future – the Next 35 years. The program will feature familiar faces and a few surprises, with a very special musical performance by superstar Moby.

Non-animal Methods Now

A group of researchers in Canada are working together to create a model made of human cells that they hope will eventually lead to a treatment for COVID-19, without the use of animals. The key to understanding how the virus can spread throughout the body so quickly is to examine its effects soon after infection, but before symptoms are experienced. Researchers say this would not be possible in humans since a patient might be infected for two weeks before symptoms appear. However, by creating mini models that mimic the movement of human cells in the nose, mouth, eyes, and lungs, and then exposing them to COVID-19, researchers will be able to see how the virus works, in real time, as it invades the body. READ MORE

The Leaping Bunny Program, managed by AAVS, has recently posted its most up-to-date listing of cruelty-free companies, including those that have successfully completed its annual recommitment process.

By requiring companies to recommit to being cruelty-free in order to keep their certification, Leaping Bunny provides the most reliable and trustworthy list of companies that don’t test on animals. READ MORE

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Stop Animal Testing - Animal Testing Weekly Updates

Dogs, cats, monkeys, horses, mice, rats, and many other animals are being cut open, burned, poisoned, and killed in cruel and archaic experiments.

Animal testing is a major problem. About 1,438,553 animals [Not including rats, mice and other small animals] are killed in testing each year!  

These tests are cruel and in-humane.  

Animals are often taken form streets or bought from shelters to become test subjects! 

Just think, you could loose your pet one day and find out the animal shelter sold him/her to testers! 

The tests preformed are extremely cruel. And we fund them.

Many tax dollars go to these cruel companies to make animal tests happen. we need to reduce the amount of animal tests going on, if not get rid of tests for good.

But today, you can do twice as much to help end their suffering.

Please help the PETA "Stop Animal Testing" challenge today and sign the Petition to Stop Animal Testing at once!

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Our companies are known for creating products that enhance people's lives. Through Sunset Corporation of America and its companies, we’re equally dedicated to improving lives.  Our commitment extends to helping local communities, fostering better educational systems, supporting the arts and culture, helping disadvantaged youth, protecting and improving the environment, animal welfare, wildlife issues and encouraging employee volunteerism.

The Sustainable Action Network (SAN) is a leading global non-profit organization (a Don Lichterman non-profit organization) dedicated to building a global community....