Activate for Animals – March 2017

Keep Our Pets Safe


Random source Class B dealers earned their notorious reputation. They have made money by selling former pet dogs and cats from pounds and shelters to research facilities so the animals can be used in experiments. However, the Pet Safety and Protection Act (PSPA), which was introduced to Congress in February, aims to put these unscrupulous dealers out of business—for good!

“Class B dealers have racked up an atrocious record of illegal activity and cruelty to animals,” said Representative Mike Doyle (D-PA), cosponsor of the bill. “This program has been an unmitigated disaster…. Congress should have shut it down years ago.”

While their numbers have dwindled in recent years, there are still random source Class B dealers with active licenses that can sell dogs and cats to labs. These business practices are unethical and even those in the scientific community question their use. In fact, the National Institutes of Health, the largest funder of biomedical research in the world, will not fund research that uses animals acquired from random source dealers.

It’s time to finally end the dirty business of random source animal dealers!

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In the News

Spinach…as an Alternative?

In recent years, scientists have discovered how to design models of human organs made of human cells. However, simulating blood-flow in these organ models has been difficult. Now researchers at the Worcester Polytechnic Institute are using the veins in spinach leaves to create a vascular network that replicates how blood moves through heart muscle.

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High-Tech Alternative for Students

Students at the Academy of the Sacred Heart in New Orleans are benefiting from a generous gift from their school’s alumnae: a high-tech, synthetic cadaver the students call Synthia. This life-like model can be used repeatedly, and gives students the opportunity to try many medical procedures, even surgery. One student who worked with Synthia said it was “an amazing experience…especially if you’re interested in pursuing a medical career.”

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