Cancer research without animal experiments awarded



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Award ceremony for cancer research without animal testing

Researchers from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) were awarded the Science Prize for animal-free cancer research by the Association of Doctors Against Animal Experiments. By linking cell research and engineering science, award-winning research does not require animal experiments.

Animal experiments are still as widespread in medical research as they are controversial. For the animals, they mean "pain, suffering and permanent damage" (German Animal Welfare Act), science hopes to gain far-reaching knowledge for the treatment of patients. But the results of animal experimentation are not only morally and ethically reprehensible, according to the Verein Ärzte gegen Tierversuche, they are also hardly reliably transferable to humans. Therefore, the association supports animal-free research and now has a 10,000 Euro prize to Dr. rer. nat. Irina Nazarenko and Dr.-Ing. Stefan Giselbrecht from KIT awarded for the development of an in vitro model of cell communication between tumor and healthy tissue that enables cancer cells to be researched without the laboratory mouse tests that are otherwise common in this research area.

Research examines communication in the formation of metastases The scientists at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology have examined the communication between tumor and stem cells in the development of metastases to other organs as part of their award-winning research. The interdisciplinary project of the so-called BioInterfaces program makes a valuable contribution to the understanding of human cancer with the analysis of cell communication during metastasis, according to the award ceremony. On the basis of the most modern research methods, the KIT scientists also succeeded in linking cell research with engineering, which means that their investigations do not require animal testing at all, the doctors against animal testing justified the current award ceremony. In the research project of the KIT scientists, human cells are organotypically cultivated on microstructured biochips in bioreactors in order to subsequently serve as a bone marrow and breast cancer model, on which the processes of metastasis can be realistically reproduced. This not only makes it possible to analyze the communication processes involved in the formation of metastases, but can also open up new therapeutic approaches, the award winners report on their research. The aim is to control the behavior of tumor and stem cells and to develop new therapies in the field of tumor nanotechnology.

Scientists completely do without animal experiments For the association Ärzte gegen Tierversuche e.V., the research of the KIT scientists is not only worthy of the price because of the results, but also because the use of animal experiments is completely dispensed with. In doing so, the scientists make it clear that - contrary to what has often been claimed - successful research is also possible without animal experiments. Thanks to an earmarked inheritance, the medical association has the financial means to support such projects, whereby the "prerequisite for the eligibility of a project is research without animal testing or animal material", emphasized the biologist and research assistant at the doctors against animal testing, Silke Bitz. It is crucial that "the nutrient media for the cell cultures and the antibodies do not come from animals, but are produced synthetically," continued Bitz. The association Dr. med. Maret Bauer from the Clinic for Gynecology and Obstetrics at the University Medical Center Schleswig-Holstein in Kiel has been awarded a science prize for the development of a three-dimensional cell culture model that enables breast cancer to be researched without animal testing or the use of animal materials.

Millions of animals are killed every year in the name of science For more than 30 years, the association Ärzte gegen Tierversuche has been committed to ethical, purely animal-free scientific research. The public opponents of the animal experiment are trying to direct public interest to what they consider to be intolerable conditions in animal experimentation. But despite the efforts of the association, the number of animal experiments has continued to increase in recent years. In April, the medical association therefore launched a public campaign together with the "Bürger gegen Tierversuche eV - Hamburg" and the "Lobby pro Tier Mienenbüttel - Bürgerinitiative gegen Tierversuche", in which the organizers also drew attention to the fact that around 2.8 million Animals die annually in Germany "under the guise of science a cruel and senseless death in the laboratory". The numbers of animal experiments continue to increase every year, which is not only associated with the suffering of millions of living things, but is also a sign of "misguided medicine and science", the animal experiment opponents declared. (fp)

Also read:
Actions against animal experiments in Hamburg
Pain can be a matter of the head

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