John Donne said that no man is an island, and while he expressed that sentiment almost 400 years ago, it’s even more true today. In fact, while Donne meant to suggest that humans need to be part of a community to thrive, these days the idea is being taken even further, to include not only other humans, but also animals and the environment.
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Researchers working with animal models traditionally look at the brain, but recent studies are increasingly focused on a different area—the gut, or microbiome, which is emerging as an important factor in human health.
All over the world, animal models are used in pre-clinical research to learn more about how the body works, and to identify causes and develop treatments and cures for disorders and diseases. While global research goals may be similar, there are significant differences between standards for pre-clinical research with animals in the United States versus internationally.
How important is the comfort and “happiness” of the mice we use in research? Providing laboratory animals a comfortable, safe, and enriching environment that gives them a way to play and act in accordance with their natural instincts is more than kindness; multiple studies show that it actually makes them better research subjects and leads to better outcomes with greater scientific validity.
Rodents, usually rats and mice, have been the most commonly used animals for biomedical research for more than a century for a number of reasons: they are readily available, easy to handle, and very similar to humans physiologically and genetically.
While there are similarities between mice and rats, there are several significant physiological and behavioral differences between the two that researchers need to consider when deciding which to use for a specific application.
For the past 100 years, mice have been the primary model for biomedical research. Not only are they easy to keep and reproduce, mice have significant similarities to humans both genetically and physiologically.
When you’re working in a lab with research animals, having the right equipment is paramount. Use this helpful checklist to make sure your lab has all the equipment needed for maximum efficiency and the safety of your technicians and animals.
Research requires money, and finding the funds you need to support your research is a fact of life for most clinical researchers.
Fortunately there are many sources of funding available, including research grants, awards, fellowships, cooperatives, and other types of funding.
Animal models have been used in biomedical research for hundreds of years, and clinical research using mice and rats has led to some of the most important scientific breakthroughs in 2018.
Does the general public know about the scientific research you’re conducting? If your findings aren’t getting any coverage in the mainstream news, the answer is probably not.